Iran, the sure bet in children’s films, won four awards in the 16th International Children’s Film Festival that concluded amid pomp and glitter here on Friday.

However, the much coveted ‘Best Film’ awards went to Germany and China in the International Competition and Asian Panorama categories respectively. ‘The Crocodiles’, the German film by Christian Ditter, which appealed to the exploratory zeal of the children, won Golden Elephant in the International Competition while it was the ‘Two Men’s Calssroom’(China) by Dong Ling which dealt with the trauma of a HIV-infected kid that did it in the Asian Panorama.

Chief Minister Rosaiah, who gave away the awards, lauded the efforts of the jury members and said the festival would be remembered by the people of Hyderabad, its children in particular.

“As I said earlier, Hyderabad has become centre for national and international events. I congratulate all the participants,” he said in his brief address.

Children’s Jury differed from the adults’ and the ‘Best Film’ awards of its choice went to ‘The Letter for the King’(Netherlands) and ‘Half Mine, Half Yours’(Iran) in the International Competition and Asian Panorama respectively.

Before she gave away the awards, Minister J.Geetha Reddy announced that a record number of 1.2lakh school children watched 80 films on 11 screens in the city. This was besides the exclusive screening for the underprivileged children and children from juvenile homes.

Bollywood diva of the bygone era Juhi Chawla attended as Special Invitee and gave away the awards for the ‘Best Director’. The Golden Elephants went to Harald Hamrell for ‘A Witch in our Family’(Sweden) and Pandiraj for the Indian film ‘The Kids’ in the International Competition and Asian Panorama categories respectively.

The final day of the festival had celebrities galore from the Telugu film industry. Actor Jagapathi Babu presented the awards for ‘Best Animation Film’, to the makers of ‘New Species’(Latvian) and ‘The Cunning Tailor and The Young Man’(Iran) in the two categories respectively.

The event was presided over by the Union Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Choudhury Mohan Jatua who gave awards for the Best Screenplay. The awards went to Christian Ditter for ‘The Crocodiles’(Germany) and Masoud Naghashzadeh for ‘Child and the Angel’(Iran) respectively.

Silver Elephants for the Best Short Film awards went to ‘Elephants’(U.K.) and ‘I feel pity for the Ozone layer’(Iran).

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