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IFFI receives flak yet again

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Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Panaji (UNI): The ongoing International Film Festival of India (IFFI) continues to ignite loud protests from the regional cinema for one or the other glaring mistakes.

It sparked flames on November 27th with the organisers ignoring even the basic formalities before screening the films for an enlightened audience on the 5th day of the mega event.

The theme song of the festival also drew protests from the regional cinema, as it did not contain any clippings other than the Hindi Cinema in the inaugural session of the festival on November 23.

The festival brochure, which published photo of Kannada filmmaker Girish Kasaravalli in place of late Dr Rajkumar in the homage section, too received flak.

Interestingly, the festival brochure committed another blunder by describing the film premiered yesterday evening as Konkani instead of Marathi.

This time, veteran and highly respected Marathi director-actor-producer Ramesh Deo took the lead to protest against the ''callous attitude'' of the organisers towards the regional cinema.

''We do not need a microphone to tell you what is happening and how the regional cinema has been treated throughout. We are all Marathas and let us keep the spirit in all respects,'' he shouted on the stage of the Dinanath Mangeshkar auditorium of the Kala Academy, the main venue of the festival, before the Marathi film Maye Bap (Glass House) was premiered last evening.

The organisers drew protests with the announcer failing to introduce the film cast to the audience, as had been the tradition.

The enraged Mr Deo shouted against the treatment meted out to the cast which was sitting by his side awaiting their turn, and went onto the stage to register the protest.

''Would the same treatment be meted out to the Hindi Cinema?'' he questioned.

Later, with none coming out to handover the microphone, he took the lead in inviting the film cast to the stage. All including the well known and award winning filmmaker, script writer and lyricist Gajendra Ahire rushed on to the stage in anger and protested the treatment.

The 130-minute film, which weaves around a housewife who lost her mental balance following the shock of the violent death of her lone son in a train bomb blast in Mumbai and her recovery from it, was well received by the audience. Her husband Viswanath, a railway ticket collector, experiences a harrowing time to get her normalcy back.

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