Malda, 30 October 2017- Malda witnesses the first-of-a-kind film International Children’s Film Festival organized by children themselves. The International 17th International Children’s Film, organized by UNICEF, Talaash and Cine Central, was formally inaugurated by the Hon’ble Governor of West Bengal, Shri Keshari Nath Tripathi in July this year. The Malda chapter of this film festival was formally inaugurated today by the District Magistrate, Shri Kaushik Bhattachayra, IAS at Sanaullah Auditorium, Malda.
This film festival is unique since this is the first time ever in India that an International Children’s Film Festival has been organized and hosted by children themselves. This initiative is part of UNICEF’s global ‘Children Take Over’ campaign.
“This takeover, set for November 20, marks the anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the mobilization of the first World Children’s Day. World Children’s Day will be a day for children, by children. In the run-up to November 20, UNICEF is inviting children around the world to speak up to help give a voice to the millions of children whose voices remain unheard. We are so excited and proud to see these young people taking the lead and voicing their opinions on issues that matter to them the most,” shared Ms. Moumita Dastidar, Communication Specialist, UNICEF.
This festival, supported by UNICEF is one of the very few film festivals across the country which is entirely dedicated to children. Ms. Ayesha Sinha, Executive Director, Talaash, stated, “Film is a very powerful tool through which social awareness can be raised and dialogue can be initiated on rights, status and experiences of children with children as well as with adults. Getting access to children’s films is a challenge, particularly for children coming from marginalized and rural backgrounds. In this context, Talaash aims at making this medium accessible for children in
Malda through this film festival. We are very happy that this film festival has also received support from the District Magistrate of Malda and his team”.
Shri Kaushik Bhattacharya, District Magistrate of Malda inaugurated the film festival and flagged off the 12 day long festival which will be taken to thousands of children across four blocks of Malda: Old Malda, Gazole, Habibpur and Ratua II blocks with an aim to reach out to children who usually do not get opportunities to be part of film festivals.
30 adolescents will be hosting this film festival as organizers, anchors, performers, event managers, designers, volunteers and media spokespersons. This year, the theme of this film festival is “For Every Child” (which is the Global theme for UNICEF as well) highlighting the need for equal opportunities for ‘all children’. The festival was opened in Malda with Anindo Banerjee’s film “Chaplin” and will be showcasing films by well-known filmmakers such as Nagesh Kukunoor, Manzare Hassain, et all in the next 12 days.
“Children’s films are one of the most potential mediums for value education for young audiences all over the world. Children’s films, though are widely celebrated in many countries, have not been given adequate space and forums in India. This festival is an attempt to bridge the gap and showcase films which highlight issues that affect the lives and welfare of the children across the world,” shares Mr. Pranab Dasgupta, Joint Secretary, Cine Central Calcutta.
“Films have a tremendous influence on the young minds and have the potential to become a powerful medium to educate them and to communicate with them. Films as a medium for edu-entertainment can go a long way in helping to explain their rights and entitlements while offering the excitement of watching cinema that most children often crave for,” stated Ms. Moumita Dastidar, UNICEF.