Verite Film Festival (Kashmir



Verite Film Festival (Kashmir)
Verite Film Festival (Kashmir), first edition (2011) was organized by Parallel Post – an e-magazine [1] in collaboration with Islamic University of Science & Technology [2] (IUST), Awantipora and held on 20th April 2011 at IUST campus in Indian Administered Kashmir and will be held annually thereafter. It was the first National Students Film festival in Kashmir. The festival is aimed to explore the budding talent among the students in the field of film making. Twenty-two films were screened in the first edition of the film festival dealing with various ‘hard-hitting and pressing issues’ such as livelihood issues, loss of tradition and heritage, conflict and its various facets of presentation, drug abuse etc. [3]
Verite Film Festival Logo.

Aim of the festival
The objective of organizing this Film festival is to groom the potential of the young documentary film makers across the country and particularly from the Kashmir valley. Moreover the festival will provide a launch pad for Kashmiri discourse whereby the upcoming student film makers will meet and interact with the established film makers and students throughout the country.

In this year 22 films directed by young artists were screened dealing with various ‘hard-hitting and pressing issues’.[3] Most of the films screened in the festival were about Kashmir Conflict [4] and its various facets of presentation, livelihood issues, loss of tradition and heritage, drug abuse etc. A short animated movie ‘Hopscotch’ by cartoonist Malik Sajad revealed the story of divided Kashmir. Another documentary 'Patience on trial' by Naureen Farooq revolved around the wishes, hopes and needs of orphans. [5]

A participant receiving award during the prize distribution ceremony at Verite Film Festival held on 20th April 2011 at IUST.

Verite Film Festival (Kashmir) The film ‘In limbo, Kashmiris Half-widows” a film by Lebul Nissa, Human Rights lawyer was about Half-widows of Kashmir ("half-widow", a term given to women whose husbands have completely disappeared and are still missing during the ongoing conflict in Kashmir.). [6] The event was was first of its kinds and was praised by many dignitaries present at the festival. Noted poet Poet Zareef Ahmed Zareef expressed joy and said there is a dire need of noble teachers who will lead budding talent into the right direction. “The way they presented the various aspects of Kashmir is admirable. God has gifted Kashmir with the best talent. The day will definitely come when we will produce the better film makers to show the true story of our Land”.[5]


Twenty-two films were screened out of which Life on Wheels by Adil Shah won the award for the best film. Pankh by Nishant was adjudged the second prize winner and the third prize was given to three films - Lost by Ather Mohiuddin, Hopskotch by Malik Sajjad and Eidiyaan by Muhammad Irfan Dar amd Aman Kaleem. [7]

Films Screened
Film Director Duration Details

Behind the Darkness The Ninth Act (special screening) Pandiths

Akif Mufti

30 min

It is an attempt to unearth the history of middle ages when there was a tremendous intellectual activity in Islamic world. Experiment

Ali Emraann Kureshi Mehak Fayaz

25 min.

16 min.

The documentary is about Kashmiri pundits who had not left Kashmir when other from their community where leaving, after militancy started in 1989. The documentary tries to look into the various aspects of their life in Kashmir, which unlike the migrant is mostly unreported. The film dicments the life of shikarawalas and the life lived in the lake city.

Sailing Through generations Dal Lake

Benish Ali Bhat Turfat ul ain Jamshed Rasul and Team. Nayeem Raja Harris Zargar Adil shah

15 min.

6 min

It is all about the mesmerizing beauty of Dal lake.

Stairs of Faith

7 min.

Stairs of faith is a documentary depicting the unflinching faith that people in Kashmir have in the Shrine of Sheikh Hamza Makhdoom popularly known in Kashmir as Makhdoom Sahab(R.A).

Charare Sharief Dreams of Despair I love you maa

7 min. 5 min.

It’s a travelogue -

6 min.

This movie is about crèche going children.

Life on Wheels (Best Film)) Lost (Shared 3rd prize with two others) Drug De-addiction Hopscotch (Shared 3rd prize with two others)

9 min.

The film is about the life of a bus conductor. Often seen is a vestigial organ of the society, the files an endeavour to look into the life of this sect of the society -

Athar Mohidin

40 min.

Nayeem Khan Malik Sajad

9 min.

This documentary is about the drug de-addiction. It mainly focuses on the rehabilitation of drug addicts. This is a short animated movie.

2 min.

Verite Film Festival (Kashmir)

Talks about the women folk who are present only in Kashmir. Q-What makes a man fly? Ans.- A dream

Half widows Pankh (2nd Prize winner) Raaga

Leb ul Nisa 2 min. Nishant Rana Chirag Thakkar 6 min.

6 min.

A spiritual commentary on the essence of life. All of us have those moments, when life seems static and when the tables turn against one. This is astory of one such man in his thirties who re-visits that juncture of his life when a stranger helped him move on. Raaga! Docu-fiction, Zadah -A socio-political love story. An attempt to understand and explain the prolonged and complex issue of the state of Kashmir personified as a woman oppressed between two patriarchal hypocrite society(s). The role of the media. And a question. Just 100 years ago sericulture was largest revenue generating department of Kashmir. But now this industry is battling for survival. Our documentary under title ‘Heritage Lost’ has been made to highlight many issues related to this industry which includes the most important issue, that is, the valley once had one of the largest silk factories in the world. But now more than 50% of its land has been sold to different departments by the government to clear liabilities of employees. The process of selling this great industrial heritage is going on and nobody seems to be bothered about protecting it. This is a comic movie which compares jeans and lungi culture.


Sushant. H. 13 min. W.

Heritage Lost

Rohi Jehan

8 min.

Lungi vs Jeans (Special screening) Patience on trial

Nasir Ali Khan aka RJ Nasir Naureen Farooq M. Irfan Dar



This movie is about Orphans.

Eidyaan (Shared 3rd prize with two others)

18 min.

Eidyaan is about a ost brother whose return is awaited in a household for over nine years. FICTION

Land of no return M. Gowhar 13 min. Bhat

The movie is about the Tibetan refugees in India.

Notes and references
[1] http:/ / www. theparallelpost. com [2] http:/ / www. islamicuniversity. edu. in/ about. html [3] Verite Film Festival at IUST (http:/ / www. earlytimes. in/ newsdet. aspx?q=71559) [4] Kashmir Conflict refers to the dispute between Pakistan and India that has bedeviled relations between the two countries since August 1947. It is also a known fact that the perceptions of India and Pakistan about what constitutes the dispute are totally different. Pakistan regards it as an unfinished agenda of the Partition of the sub-continent in 1947 and as an issue of granting the right of self-determination to the Kashmir’s, a principle also upheld by the UN Security Council resolutions. India, on the other hand, regards it as its territorial issue. It asserts that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and that Pakistan is occupying Indian Territory. The impasse has resulted with India occupying two thirds of the territory of Jammu and Kashmir, and Pakistan administering one-third, with an UN-recognized ceasefire line separating them. India and Pakistan has fought several wars over Kashmir. Besides there is an indigenous struggle for Right to self-determination going on in Indian Administered Kashmir since 1947. In 1989 an armed struggle against Indian rule started which was crushed by Indian Forces. Thousands of Kashmiri people have died during this conflict. Last few years have seen massive protests in Kashmir against the Indian rule in Kashmir. Dozens of protesters were killed by Indian forces during these protests. [5] Young filmmakers exhibit talent and creativity (http:/ / www. risingkashmir. com/ news/ iust-organizes-student-8740. aspx) [6] Since 1989, when armed conflict started in Kashmir, more than 8,000 people have disappeared after their arrest by the law enforcing agencies. Majority of them are non-combatant Kashmirs. The disappeared of Kashmir (http:/ / english. aljazeera. net/ indepth/ features/ 2011/ 04/ 201141710204769839. html) [7] Film festival held at IUST (http:/ / greaterkashmir. com/ news/ 2011/ Apr/ 21/ film-festival-held-at-iust-45. asp)

Verite Film Festival (Kashmir)


External links
• The Parallel Post – An e-magazine (

Article Sources and Contributors


Article Sources and Contributors
Verite Film Festival (Kashmir)  Source:  Contributors: Kashmirspeaks, 1 anonymous edits

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