The triumph of humankind over coronavirus appeared to the underlying theme of the closing ceremony of the 51st edition of the International Film Festival of India, with nearly all speakers at the concluding event lauding the successful organisation of the event amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

In a video message which was played to the audience during the closing ceremony films icon Amitabh Bachchan said that the successful organisation of the event was an example of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dictum of turning challenges into opportunities.

“I was wondering when the (Covid-19) situation would cease and I would get to meet everyone. But all that became irrelevant when the government decided to hold IFFI. IFFI is a great example of the PM’s call to change challenges into opportunities,” Bachchan said.

Chief Minister Pramod Sawant who heads the Entertainment Society of Goa, a state government agency which co-organises the annual event with the central government’s Directorate of Film Festivals, expressed confidence that India would defeat Covid-19.

“India will defeat Covid, especially now that two rounds of vaccination are complete. Corona will lose. India will win,” Sawant said.

Union Minister of state for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Babul Supriyo said that while the pandemic had caused havoc and movie halls were closed cinema still found a way to people who cherish it.

“Pandemic has caused havoc to human minds, emotionally, financially in every way, but Goa must be congratulated for being indispensable to IFFI. This year we could not go to cinema halls, but cinema came to us in different forms with OTT platforms and television,” Supriyo said.

Goa Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari also lauded the organisers of the event saying “in Covid times to have a global festival with such courage and commitment is commendable”.

–IANS

maya/rt