Assamese film ‘Veerangana’ and Gujarati film ‘The Spell of Purple’ will be showcased in the Indian Panorama section on day 3 of the 52nd International Film Festival of India (IFFI).
The Indian Panorama section is known for selection of the feature and non-feature films of cinematic, thematic, and aesthetic excellence for the promotion of film art through the non-profit screening of these films under different categories.
‘Veerangana’ directed by Kishore Kalita documents the story of India’s first female commando unit based out of Guwahati, Assam, that works towards protection of women from eve-teasing.
Talking about his film, Kishore says, “The Veeranganas were included in Assam police in 2021. I officially contacted the police department (of the state of Assam) and present DGP of Assam, Mr Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta helped me a lot and furnished some information about Veeranganas.”
“I shared my views with the screenplay writer of this film, Mr Utpal Dutta, who encouraged me and asked me to proceed further and explore the idea. The message that I wish to convey through my film is that women can protect women”, he adds.
The other film ‘The Spell of Purple’ is a short fiction directed by Prachee Bajania, about a group of women in Gujarat who are tagged as witches by villagers. This is her graduation film for FTII where she pursued direction and screenplay writing. Prachee came to know about the subject through a radio programme where she heard a group of tribal women singing, she then set off to follow the stories of these women.
Talking about how things materialised for this film, she said, “What motivated me to actually go there and see it for myself was a little song that I heard on radio, it was it was barely 15 seconds but it stayed with me because it was a group of women singing. I went to Palanpur and Devgadh Baria.
“Luckily, I came across a group of women, which was called the Aadivasi Kalakar Tukdi. These women would take folk songs, mostly they were wedding songs and they would infuse them with lyrics of their own.”
“So, these tunes were very catchy, everybody knew them but the words were their own and through these words they were telling their stories and I found that very interesting because while it was an act of resistance, it was also done within the scope of their own culture and I also thought it was very smart because unless you really heard the words you wouldn’t know that this is a song of protests,” she concluded.