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article imageCelebrating Life and Livelihoods - a people's festival

By Armstrong Vaz     Dec 1, 2008 in Entertainment
If IIFF was all about glamour, Goa simultaneously hosted a parallel three-day film festival from November 23 to 25 – Goan Poelpe’s Film Festival (GPFF)-a people’s initiative, ‘Celebrating Life and Livelihoods’ as they preferred to call it.
If the India International Film Festival (IIFF) was all about glamour, big stars and the red carpet being rolled for the stars, here was another film festival which was be fret of all the mega publicity and the associated glitz. Goa simultaneously hosted a parallel three-day film festival from November 23 to 25 – Goan Poelpe’s Film
Festival (GPFF)-a people’s initiative, ‘Celebrating Life and Livelihoods’ as they preferred to call it.
The curtains in IFFI which was inaugurated on 22 November will come down on December 2.
The GPFF was about social activism at the grass root levels and highlighting the issues which the mainstream media – both visual and print - have effectively ignored.
The film festival featured digital narratives and award-winning documentaries from around India and Bangladesh. It documented Goa’s fight against mining - 127 operational mining leases over 8% of Goa’s surface threaten livelihoods and water sustainability of the hinterland. The assault on tribal livelihoods – tribal Goa is being forced into a low-grade parallel economy. Speculative real-estate development – conversion of agricultural land to speculative real estate. The struggle for participatory democracy against corruption
Challenges to Mining- For eight years till 2008, driven by the global demand for commodities, iron ore mining in Goa escalated in activity and impact. The industry has long existed in Goa as an exclusive sector, insulated from accountability, quasi-political in its influence over state policy. This is seen most clearly now, with anti-mining protests being put down brutally by the state. The state and industry have persisted with the fiction that mining is a critical part of the Goan economy, but the ecological costs and social burdens of mining have never been accounted for. A Goa-wide anti-mining network has now been forged to expose the impacts of 60 years of strip mining in Goa, and to shut down the industry.
Tribal Livelihoods - Goa's people are being corralled into a narrow and short-sighted set of beliefs about livelihoods. The government-industry combination is advocating a very limited notion of socio-economic well-being. This notion keeps out entirely the self-sustaining and symbiotic living rhythms of Goa's tribal communities, and dangerously erodes the strengths of Goa's traditional agri-fishing communities. The results are forced dispossession of homelands, internal migration and recurring poverty. Ignored by 'official' and industry-sponsored policies, tribal Goa is being forced into a low-grade parallel economy.
Change in Goa's Villages (SEZ, Mega-Projects, Tourism) - No village, panchayat or communidade space was ever designed to host the intrusions of an economically charged India. From 2000, Goa's village ecosystems have been under siege. The struggle is waged not only over the theft of land and commons and its replacement by structures that are alien to the Goan village; it is also about an idea of development that is utterly out of synch with Goa's community structures. Goa's villages have resisted the imposition of the urban, and the metropolis, scale but not always successfully.
Celebrating Goa: Alternate Images of a Tourist Destination - Goa is many-layered, and only one of these layers is tourism as the consumer knows it. A combination of economic need and marketing overkill has given Goa a brand personality that it does not at all deserve. Despite the state being 'consumed' by tourists, it has many lives outside and away from this narrow and noisy sector. Village Goa remains intimate, cooperative, concerned about human and environment, and small-scale. The people of village Goa are local patriots and it is their care and effort, when taken together, that maintains the ideology of life and livelihood that we call Goa.
The Film festival featured documentary and short films, touched many a diverse topics. Untoucbaliity, Special Economic zone, Mega-housing projects, Right to Information, nomadic tribes of India, tribal issues.
Mario Fernandes returned back from Leicester ,England to settle in Goa, and took on a number of local initiatives he talks about what Goa really needs -- developing people's skills. In another film he depicts what locals and Expats can do for their village.
WHY ARE GOA'S VILLAGERS ANGRY?- Bismark Dias, a Catholic priest from Goa, who takes a bold stance in supporting the villagers' movements in various parts of the fast-urbanising (and land-speculating driven) central coast, explains what are the issues involved, and why more concrete won't help the villagers there.
Striking silver from Saligao, Journalist Fredrick Noronha highlights the story of the boxers fighting it out to gain glory in the sport.
In, Rape of Goa, a photo documentary, filled with images of violence done to the ecology and people of Goa . It documents the violence done to the earth, as hills are cut and forests 'shaved' off. It speaks of the violence done to local inhabitants, as concrete apartments rise and threaten the security and life-styles of these older residents.
An attempt to illustrate the occurrence of tourism-related child sex abuse in India. It speaks to a cross-section of Goa to comprehensively discuss the issues involved. Its driving force is the innocence of the child.
Other issues highlighted are villagers fight against a garbage dump atop a hillock in Saligao- a fallout of tourism.
--------------------------------------------______________---------------------------------------------
India Untouched Stories of a People Apart. By director Stalin K takes a comprehensive look at untouchability ever undertaken on film. With Hindi, Bhojpuri, Gujarati, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalm with English sub-titles, the film lasted for 108 minutes.
Tribal issues -In Mahua Memories, Director and Photographer: Vinod Raja portrays the tribal issues in minutes Questions the view that projects like mining bring in employment and therefore development and prosperity to the region and its people.
In VANISHING TRAILS Dir: Vinod Raja Dur: 45 mins. The story of nomadic communities is highlighted . Glimpses of their past glory and their fast disappearing culture and craft usurped by changes in
information technology, industrialization and urbanization.
THE LAMENT OF NIYAMRAJA: a dongria kond song
Dir: Surya Dash Duration: 13 minutes. Bard, druid, healer, shaman and mystic Dambu Prasaka of the Dogria Kond tribe sings a song about the tribe's sacred mountain Niyamgiri.
SHOT DEAD FOR DEVELOPMENT: Dir: Surya Dash Duration : 1 min An animation film depicting the ongoing reality of Adivasi people in Orissa.
ISSUES ... FROM THE HEART OF CONCRETE Dur: 10 minutes. A scenic part of Goa is going under the builder's axe.
CHALLENGES TO MINING
The state and industry have persisted with the fiction that mining is a critical part of the Goan economy, but the ecological costs and social burdens of mining have never been accounted for.
SEBY, ON MINING ISSUES IN GOA Dur: 3:05 mins
Goa's leader of the Opposition (BJP's Manohar Parrikar) charged Seby Rodrigues of being a "Naxalite" (Maoist) ... for his involvement in highlighting mining-related issues affecting the people in interior Goa. Listen to what Seby has to say.
GOA, GOA, GONE*
Dir: Kurush Canteenwala Dur: 22 mins Eight percent of Goa's land is already under mining, mostly for iron ore. Now, mining activity is intensifying across the state. So is the opposition of citizens to this unregulated industry.
NIYAMGIRI - A musical preview
Dir: Surya Dash Duration: 5 min A musical documentary preview of the controversial aluminium
project by Vedanta in Niyamgiri hills.
PANI - the war for water
Dir: Surya Dash Duration: 25 min
A film made for a farmers campaign to stop diversion of water from Hirakud reservoir to mega aluminium, steel and thermal power plants.
AFTERSHOCKS: The Rough Guide to Democracy
Dir: Rakesh Sharma Dur: 1hr 05 mins
Aftershocks is a journey through the labyrinthine universe of Democracy, as it exists in its lowest unit level - the Indian village. Shot in Gujarat, after the 2001 earthquake, the film is about the transformation of the welfare state into an ally of the corporation.
Change in Goa's Villages (SEZ, Mega-Projects, Tourism)
BHAILE
Dir: Ajay Noronha Dur: 40 mins
An attempt to illustrate the occurrence of tourism-related child sex abuse in India. It speaks to a cross-section of Goa to comprehensively discuss the issues involved. Its driving force is the innocence of the child.
GOA UNDER SEIGE:
Dir: Gargi Sen Dur: 30 mins
English with subtitles it Investigates the impact of the development of large-scale tourism on the hosts: on their ecology, economy and culture. The film presents the case study of Goa, a tourism hot-spot in India. It elaborates on the different kinds of tourists who visit Goa, and the consequence of their visit.
SALIGAO, GARBAGE ... AND THE IMPACT OF TOURISM
Frederick Noronha Dur: 5 mins
Joaquim D'Mello, former bank manager now retired, explains the struggle of the villagers to fight a garbage dump atop a hillock just looking over their village -- Saligao in Goa, India.
SAIMAKADEN SAMVAD (Dialogue With Nature)
Dir: Rajshree Bandodkar Karapurkar Duration: 90 mins
Language: Konkani English Subtitles
Our environment is under severe threat as a result human activities. Produced by Sidharth Karapurkar and Roy Fernandes is its art director.
SEZs and Mega-projects
HOW GREEN IS MY VALLEY (collection of 5 films)
Dir: Multiple (courtesy Film Beam Dec 2006)
Dur: 18 mins
The Goa Bachao Abhiyan captured the imagination of an indignant citizenry who were shocked by the attacks on land, lives and livelihoods as proposed in the Regional Plan.
AMKA NAKA SEZ: The solidarity against SEZs in Goa
Dur:18 mins
A audio visual capture of the solidarity and success of the SEZ Virodhi Manch.
SOTER D'SOUZA on Panchayati Raj issues in Goa
Dur: 13 mins
Soter D'Souza, campaigner in Goa, talks about the panchayat raj issues he has been working on for a significant period of time here.
THE CHANGING FACE OF THE GOA VILLAGE
Dur: 7:05 mins
Konkani poet Shashikant Punaji introduces his poem 'Mhozo Ganv'. In it he expresses the impact of urbanisation on the Goan village. "Somebody has buried a time-bomb in my village..." The poetry is in the Pernem dialect of Konkani. The poet writes in Konkani, but takes the trouble to explain his work in English here.
WHY ARE GOA'S VILLAGERS ANGRY?
Dur: 9:49 mins
Bismark Dias, a Catholic priest from Goa, who takes a bold stance in supporting the villagers' movements in various parts of the fast-urbanising (and land-speculating driven) central coast, explains what are the issues involved, and why more concrete won't help the villagers there.
GOLDEN EYE REPORT ON ORDA HILL-CUTTING
Prod: Golden Eye Dur: 9 mins
News report on the cutting of a hill in the sea-side village of Candolim highlights a number of the problems that work together to create the nightmare for Goa's average citizen.
THE RAPE OF GOA
Rajan Parrikar
Photo documentary, filled with images of violence done to the ecology and people of Goa . It documents the violence done to the earth, as hills are cut and forests 'shaved' off. It speaks of the violence done to local inhabitants, as concrete apartments rise and threaten the security and life-styles of
these older residents.
Celebrating Goa: Alternate Images of a Tourist Destination
Goa is many-layered, and only one of these layers is tourism the consumer knows it. A combination of economic need and marketing overkill has given Goa a brand personality that it does not at all deserve. Despite the state being 'consumed' by tourists, it has many lives outside and away from this
narrow and noisy sector. Village Goa remains intimate, cooperative, concerned about human and environment, and small-scale. The people of village Goa are local patriots and it is their care and effort, when taken together, that maintains the ideology of life and livelihood that we call Goa. It seeks to initiate via digital narrative, and supplement through discussion with the protagonists of
the narrative, alternate visionings of a lived (as opposed to visited) Goa.
JOSEPH ANI FLAVIA
Priya Kamat Dur: 15 mins
This is a fictional episode from a day in the life of two persons from the village of Orlim in Salcete, Goa. Joseph is an entrepreneur of a cottage industry and Flavia is a little girl who chances to step into Joseph's house while he is in the midst of work. Using characters from factual life, the film constructs an imaginary encounter between them. It reveals a moment of truth that blurs the distinction between
documentary and fiction.
LEROY VELOSO, THE VILLAGE LIFE, AND STUDYING GOA
Dur:5:05
At a noisy cafe, Leroy of Moira talks about what it means to understand a village in Goa. He talks about the past and present, and what makes it special ... and the traditional clans (vangors) of the village.
SO OFTEN
Prod: Pamela D'Mello
Dur: 4 :15 mins
A personalized digital narrative about the enigma that faces village communities in tourist hot-spot Goa where runaway tourism converts the landscape spawning a holiday-home/tourist-resort building boom that dramatically alters rustic village communities.
CAFE PRAKASH? WHY?
Dur:10:19
Voices from Goa tell you why Cafe Prakash, a tiny restaurant in Goa, now has pretension of being the 'unofficial press club of Goa'. http://in.youtube.com/watch?v=1_83RCYe_Xc
STRIKING SILVER... FROM SALIGAO
Dur: 4:50
On a summer evening in 2008, a walk down to Lourdes Convent brings one face-to-face with youngsters working hard on something unusual. What's it? We can fight together, and we can live together say three boys from there.
POMBURPA INITIATIVES... WHAT VILLAGERS AND EXPATS CAN DO
Prod: Mario Fernandes
Shows what a village can do.
MUSIC, SPORTS, A LIBRARY ... WHERE THERE'S A WILL
Dur: 1:07 mins
Mario Fernandes returned back from Leicester to Goa, and took on a number of local initiatives here. This is his story of what he sees Goa really needs -- basically developing people's skills.
MOVING IMAGES... A FILM SOCIETY FROM GOA, INDIA
Dur: 3:31 mins
Gayatri Konkar and her husband, Salil, returned early back to India from jobs in the US. With other local backers here, they set up and run the Moving Images film club that meets at the International Centre, Goa.
RTI IN GOA... AND THE MEDIA
Dur: 8:06 mins
Lionel Messias long-time journo in Goa and elsewhere, explains his experiences in deploying the Right to
Information Act in Goa, to dig up the dirt...
STORIES OF CHANGE
Dir: Simon & Sara
Dur: 55 Minutes
A real life documentary set in Bangladesh, about the lives of five women aging from 16 to 60, coming from different walks of life, from different profession, religions and regions of Bangladesh.
SOURCE: - www.moviesgoa.org/gpff.html
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