The Telegraph
Sunday , June 22 , 2014
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Odisha to host world film fest

- Govt to promote Odia culture across country

Bhubaneswar, June 21: Odisha government today announced it would host an international film festival in the state this year.

Cultural festivals, which will be named Odisha festivals, will also be hosted in various other cities across the country, said chief secretary Jugal Kishore Mohapatra today.

In a preparatory meeting for the ensuing festivals, the chief secretary, principal secretary of information and public relations, Pradeep Kumar Jena, said that the international film festival would be organised during November-December this year.

“It has been decided that the film festival will be organised simultaneously in twin cities of Bhubaneswar and Cuttack. We have for now identified auditoriums of Regional Research Laboratory, KIIT, and Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneswar, for organising the festival,” said Jena.

Odisha Film Development Corporation (OFDC) and departments of information and public relations and culture will jointly organise the festival. Chief secretary has also directed the OFDC to prepare an archive of Odia films selecting good and qualitative films from both the traditional and modern realms.

The Odisha festival would enable promotion of tourism and popularisation of Odia art and culture outside the state borders in cities such as Bangalore, Mumbai and Hyderabad.

“It has been decided that the Odisha festival in these places will be organised in collaboration with respective local Odia associations,” said culture and tourism secretary Arabinda Padhee.

It has been proposed to organise the festival during festive seasons of these places and it Odisha festival will showcase classic Odia films, Odissi dance, music, tourism circuits, handicrafts and textiles.

Textiles and handloom secretary Surendra Kumar and chairman-cum-managing director of Idco Vishal Dev were also present on the occasion.

To promote the festivals, the Ekamra Haat at Bhubaneswar will host a series of activities throughout the year.

“It has been decided that the cultural societies of all districts will be given chances to showcase their heritage through art and cultural performances. The cultural treasures of each district, its folk songs and arts will be displayed by the artists,” said an official.

The activities, as a run up to the main festivals, would be hosted in every month of the year. It has been proposed to allot at least three days to each district to showcase their art, culture and performance.

Officials of the culture department said that the international film festival to be hosted by the state would be conducted by directorate of film festivals, New Delhi. Earlier in 2012, the directorate had written to the state to conduct centenary film festivals, but confusion among various departments led to missing out on the opportunity.

This time, however, the officials have geared up, under the chairmanship of the chief secretary, to smoothly organise the international film festival.

“We have been advised to start detailing and planning the arrangements for the international film festival so that Odisha proves to be a good host for the event. It will be a big draw with renowned names coming down to Odisha. Hence, we will give all possible support to the directorate for the event. The culture department and the OFDC, among other departments, will be co-ordinating with the directorate for the film festival,” said culture director Sushil Kumar Das.