Cinema is a powerful tool to forge better relations between nations: Tewari

The 18 International Children’s Film Festival of India got off to a colourful start with Union Minister of Information & Broadcasting Manish Tewari describing cinema as a powerful tool to forge better relations between nations.

The inaugural at the Lalitha Kala Thoranam had impressive cultural performances, including one on the Bhagavad Gita by physically challenged members of the Ability Unlimited Foundation, on wheel chairs and crutches.

It also saw the Barfi star Ranbir Kapoor shake a leg with hosts, child actors Saloni Daini and Darsheel Safary (Tare Zameen Par), to the racy tunes of a Bollywood number, sending fans into frenzy. Telugu star Rana Daggubati was also in attendance.

ICFFI’s 10 edition in the city was inaugurated by Ranbir Kapoor in presence of Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, Mr. Tewari, AP Information Minister D.K. Aruna, noted film personalities Amol Palekar and Gulzar, besides Children’s Film Society of India (CFSI) chairperson Amole Gupte and CFSI CEO Shravan Kumar and actor Amol Palekar among others. The festival opened with the animation film Goopi Gawaiiya Bagha Bajaiiya.

Mr. Tewari said such festivals provided a platform to showcase creativity, enterprise and innovation as also an occasion to reinforce the most fundamental of all inalienable rights – the right of plurality of thought and expression.

Lauding Hyderabad for hosting nine of the festival’s 18 editions thus far, he said if there was any city that reflected an Indian civilisation as one of dissemination and absorption of various streaks and streams without losing its Indianness, it was the City of Pearls.

Mr. Kiran Reddy said the need of the hour was to ensure that there was no discrimination between girls and boys and that they should be given equal education. The film industry was going through tough times, what with competition from within and from television, and the threat of piracy looming large. The Chief Minister assured the gathering that the State government would soon take up the work of building infrastructure of the children’s film complex on land already allotted to it.

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