Films division to mark diamond jubilee with festivals across India

NEW DELHI: The Films Division is set to celebrate its Diamond Jubilee with festivals of its films in different parts of the country. The celebration will start in the national capital Delhi and conclude in Mumbai.

Around 60 short films will be screened during the four-day festival from 12 June at the Films Division Auditorium in Delhi, to be inaugurated by Information and Broadcasting minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi. The duration of the films ranges from four minutes to just over one hour.

The films will be based on the freedom movement including the ‘Great Salt March’, unexplored tourist spots in India, social issues and the environment. This also includes a film on India’s quest in the Antartica.

Films based on biographicals and historical studies include those on renowned personalities like Mirza Ghalib, Mohammed Iqbal, Mahakavi Bharti, Indira Gandhi, Gautam Buddha, Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Sohrab Modi, Raj Kapoor, Nargis, Rabindranath Tagore, Amrita Shergil, Tenzing, Bhimsen Joshi, sitar maestro Ravi Shankar, Homi Bhabha, Pandit Ramnarayan and Ustad Amjad Ali Khan.

Films Division Chief Producer Kuldeep Sinha told a news conference here that the Division had digitised all its films and was now "working to create an international digital archive."

Faced with the cinema houses still refusing to show its films despite a Supreme Court directive with only Doordarshan showing some of them, he said that the Division had also applied to the ministry for launching its own documentary television channel.

He stated that the Division was working towards popularising its films at three levels: the state level, the ten cities where it has branch offices, and in schools through festivals.

He also claimed that the Division was now working towards an aggressive marketing policy.

Though the British government had its own unit for documentary films, it was shut down in 1946. The Division was initiated by Jawaharlal Nehru in April 1948. Sinha regretted that because of this, there was no documentary record of the celebrations following the declaration of independence in August 1947.

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