Kolkata girl bags Panda award

Ashwika Kapur

Ashwika Kapur  

Ashwika Kapur is the first Indian woman to win the wildlife photography prize

Ashwika Kapur of Kolkata on Friday won the prestigious Panda Award, aspart of the annual Wildscreen Film Festival held at Bristol, U.K. She is the first Indian woman to win the coveted wildlife photography award for her film on a Kakapo parrot.

The tale of a parrot

Ms. Kapur’s film “Sirocco — how a dud became a stud” is based on Sirocco, a Kakapo parrot, which is perhaps the only bird to have bagged a government job.

The male bird was appointed as the Official Spokesbird for Conservation in New Zealand and it helps in conservation advocacy on social media.

The film earned 26-year-old Ms. Kapur a nomination for the best Newcomer category, competing against two other nominees. This year, the Windscreen Film Festival received 488 entries from 42 countries.

In an email statement, Ms. Kapur said the film was a solo project and she single-handedly managed the film’s scientific research, scripting, camera work, editing and music direction. She is currently involved in the filming and production of two international television programmes in India.

After finishing her school and college education in Kolkata, Ms. Kapur graduated in Science and Natural History Filmmaking from the University of Otago, New Zealand.

The Kakapo parrot, a nocturnal and flightless species of the parrot, is classified as a critically endangered species since 2012 on the IUCN Red List.

The bird, found in New Zealand, is known to be one of the longest-living birds and its known population is 125. Over 14,000 people from 162 countries voted the Kakapo the world’s favourite species in 2013.

The tiger and the African elephant came second and third, respectively.

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Printable version | Feb 26, 2020 8:30:46 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kolkata/kolkata-girl-bags-panda-award/article6531673.ece

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