Kerala

Centre’s decision unacceptable: Balan

Denying censor exemption to three documentary films at IDSFFK

The decision of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to ban the screening of three documentary films at the International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala (IDSFFK) is unacceptable and condemnable, Cultural Affairs Minister A.K. Balan has said.

The Ministry had on Saturday denied censor exemption to three documentary films, dealing with Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) protests, unrest in Kashmir, and Rohith Vemula issue.

In a press release here on Sunday, Mr. Balan said society had been facing the fascist tendency of being intolerant to dissent and silencing of such voices through threats and intimidation.

“One cannot understand why some people are scared when films are made on current issues. Artistes often take up and debate such issues. However, now there is a tendency to silence independent voices. This ban is the latest in a long line of such assaults. Kerala will not bow down in front of this cultural fascism,” he said.

He said that Kerala was the only State where the government was organising a festival for documentaries and short films. Over the past 10 years of its existence, the festival had become an inspiration for film-makers and cultural activists, he said.

“Now, we are being told that there should only be a particular kind of cultural activity, that you can eat only a particular kind of food or follow a particular belief. This State has stood up to threats to the artistic freedom of those such as writer M.T. Vasudevan Nair and film-maker Kamal. We will stand united against this latest attack on artistic freedom too,” he said.

The films which were banned are ‘The Unbearable Being of Lightness’ directed by P.N. Ramachandra, ‘In the Shade of Fallen Chinar’ directed by N.C. Fazil and Shawn Sebastian, and ‘March March March’ directed by Kathu Lukose.

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Printable version | Feb 25, 2020 3:37:44 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/centres-decision-unacceptable-balan/article18960756.ece

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