Condemnation of IB Ministry’s Decision to Withdraw the Films Approved by the Jury of Goa Film Festival
November 15, 2017
Dakshinayan Abhiyan Goa takes strong exception to the decision taken by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry to exclude two films in the Panorama section by overriding the IFFI Jury’s prudent choice. A gross violation of the right to Freedom of Expression, we consider this act as an attempt to suppress creativity. As the festival is held in Goa, it also reflects badly on the image of the State that is known for excellent harmony and tolerance.
The duly appointed jury has selected the films after meaningful deliberations by following the criteria laid down by the authorities. It is ridiculous to consider the term ‘sexy’ and ‘nude’ as vulgar. It is pertinent to note that at the 47th IFFI last year the film ‘Love’, the sexually explicit one which was highly graphic in nature, was screened and obviously the IB Ministry had no objection to it. Therefore, there is every reason to believe that this year the authorities are behaving arbitrarily and selectively. The film ‘Nude’ is supposed to be highlighting women’s safety in patriarchal society. The censor board had objected to the term ‘sexy’ and hence the title was changed to ‘S.Durga’. It is also reported that Durga being a Hindu goddess the authorities believe that it is likely to hurt the religious sentiments. In fact, S.Durga is a story about the callous attitude of men towards the violence meted out to women. Probably, if the title was to be S. Rita or S Hasina there would have been no objection from the censor board. Interestingly, S. Durga was awarded the Hivos Tiger award at the International Film Festival of Rotterdam.
In view of the delegates attending IFFI being mature enough, it was the NDA Government’s decision to screen the uncensored films at the festival. The present intervention of the government is, therefore, most deplorable. We appreciate the ‘No Show’ decision of some of the film makers and call upon the Government to retract the decision with immediate effect by allowing to screen the two films thereby restoring the credibility of the jury and of the IFFI.
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