Majidi's Film to Open India Festival

S Durga reveals the society’s patriarchal mindset

After allegations of two movies selected by 13-member jury for the Indian Panorama section were removed by the I&B Ministry, reports are abuzz that panel head Sujoy Ghosh has also put in his papers from the post of jury chief. The movies were to be screened as part of the film festival in Goa later this month. "What Sujoy Ghosh did is a correct thing".

Ghosh, who has directed films such as Kahaani and Ahalya, resigned after the information and broadcasting ministry overruled the jury's decision on featuring two films - Sanal Kumar Sasidharan's S Durga and Ravi Jadhav's Nude. Nude is such a poignant and heartbreaking film. Instead, support those who want to show the film.

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Marathi film Nude which explores the chaotic life of a nude model at an art school has now been replaced by Vinod Kapri's "Pihu" as the opening film. It's ironic, really, that an industry that has information in its very name should fail to inform everyone involved before taking such a decision. The Panorama jury has the mandate and autonomy to pick films that are worthy of an IFFI screening. The film had also won the prestigious FIPRESCI and Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema awards for the best Malayalam film at the International Film Festival Kerala. "But I will file a case in the Kochi High Court". The film had been cleared by the jury as had been another film, Nude, which did not meet with the approval of the I&B mandarins. He added that there is a likelihood of the ministry arguing that it was rejected because it was not a technically complete film. It is heartening to find this support from others in the industry. "If they had any problem with the censorship of the film they should have asked me". Films, as also other creative works, should only be judged by their quality. At that time, while MAMI sought exemption for the film, I and B ministry raised objection and said it "has been receiving several grievances against its title and is of the view that it may affect the law and order as it hurts the religious sentiments, "Durga" being a principle Hindu Goddess". "An global film festival has nothing to do with Indian politics". "Freedom is never absolute". They wanted to know why the reasons for exclusion were not provided in the original mail to the jury. S Durga director Sanal Kumar Sasidharan and Nude director Ravi Jadhav said that they are shocked and disappointed over the removal of their films from the Panorama section.

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