Nipon Dholua’s ‘Pratyahbaan’ has been selected for screening at the 5th Delhi International Film Festival which will be held in New Delhi from December 3 to 9. Like his earlier films which tackle the tough social issues of the day, this film, cited for its socially relevant narrative, has been made with an aim to generate public awareness regarding physical and mental disability. The activist-filmmaker always believed that art should serve the interests of those striving for equality and fairness. His other films like ‘Me and My Sister’ and ‘Morisika’ too have raised issues confronting the modern society.
Besides writing its script and dialogues, Dholua has also produced the film under his flagship banner – NBDK Production. In its endeavour to promote and propagate Assamese cinema, the members of the production team led by Dholua, in a significant move, recently traversed the villages and remote areas that have no cinemas around, covering several districts, screening his three films and promos of upcoming Assamese films on the mobile cinema theatre for locals. The uninterrupted journey flagged off by the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, Ranjit Das, that set in motion on August 26, took the team, complete with a mobile cinema projector along with assorted equipments, to Merapani, Kachmari, Forkatting among other such far flung places located in the Golaghat district, before moving to Bokaghat, Kaziranga, Kuthori, Jakhalabondha, Koliabor, Samguri, Raha, Jagiroad, in addition to various parts of Guwahati, in the course of ten days. The team has also pledged to donate the proceeds collected from the event towards the Artist’s Fund.
This awareness drive, held in memory of late Sudhir Kumar Dholua clearly revealed that people genuinely evince a great deal of significance to local cinema as the screenings drew huge crowds everywhere.
In an unusual and appreciative move, NBDK Production held screenings of two Assamese movies – ‘Pratyahbaan’ and ‘Lokabandhoo’ at the city’s Central Jail, where over 1200 inmates enjoyed the shows, on October 2, on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti. After receiving the green signal from the Home Ministry, the production team went ahead, complete with a screen and projector, and other paraphernalia, to exhibit the films, which has in a way served the production’s primary purpose – raising social awareness, in addition to providing entertainment to the convicts, who have really lauded the effort.
The special screenings were formally inaugurated by PWD Minister Parimol Suklabaidya. He also took a tour of the jail and even exchanged thoughts with the convicts. On the occasion, Ranjan Sarma, Inspector General, State Prison Deptt, Moni Barua, Deputy Inspector General, noted actress Malaya Goswami, Hiranmoyee Goswami, popular artiste Chetana Das, Minu Bania, Madhurima Goswami Choudhury, director Nipon Dholua, Rajiv Dutta delivered brief speeches. The production team also donated several items to the Inspector General and Minister Suklabaidya.
‘Lokabandhoo’, the biopic on the life and works of legendary Assamese physician, freedom fighter and philanthropist Dr Bhubaneswar Barooah, directed by Dhiraj Kashyap and produced by noted homeopathic doctor Dilip Ghoshal, was screened for the male convicts at the jail, while Dholua’s ‘Pratyahbaan’ was screened for the female inmates.
As part of its mission, ‘Pratyahbaan’ was recently shown to a group of physically and mentally challenged students at a school called Destination located at Kahilipara in Guwahati. The show, attended by the NBDK members and other guests, was inaugurated by MLA Siddhartha Bhattacharjya. Everyone was left astonished and touched at the same time by the sight of the beautiful earthen lamps at the school made by the students, which were later sold in the market. Like the character in ‘Pratyahbaan’, it directly dispels many of the myths and misconceptions regarding people with disability.
The whole initiative by NBDK Production has been appreciated by many in the film industry. The production also plans to do screenings in old aged homes and orphanages.