Utpal Borpujari

December 27, 2009

A ‘Chalchitra Akademi’ in the offing?

By Utpal Borpujari

If the Expert Committee appointed by the Information & Broadcasting Ministry for “upgradation” of the National Film Awards has its way, the country might soon have a Chalchitra Akademi in the line of Sahitya, Sangeet Natak and Lalit Kala Akademis.

The suggestion to set up a Chalchitra Akademi, in keeping with earlier recommendations of the Satyajit Ray Committee and B V Karanth Committee reports, came from the Expert Committee at its introductory meeting chaired by Dada Saheb Phalke awardee director Shyam Benegal in the capital on Wednesday

The committee members, who unanimously selected Benegal as the chairman of the body, decided that they would submit their recommendations latest by March 15, so that qualitative changes could be effected in the NFA 2009 itself.

The members pointed out that the NFA carried a dignity and importance not rivalled by any other awards in the industry purely because the former gave due recognition to the pan-Indian cinema of the country.

They suggested that keeping in view the technological advancements, more categories in the awards, recognising newer professional fields, newer formats such as digital format and newer media should be recognised.

The members were also of the view that a two-tier jury, first regional and then national level jury, should be appointed to do justice to the linguistic and regional nuances.

Increase in the cash reward of the Awards and rationalizing the Censor procedures were also discussed.

Among those who attended the meeting today were Benegal, Ashok Vishwanathan, Jahnu Barua, Mohan Agashe, Nagesh Kukunoor, Rajiv Mehrotra, Shaji N Karun, Vishal Bhardwaj, Sai Paranjapye and Sharmila Tagore.

Welcoming the members, I&B Minister Ambika Soni said her Ministry wanted the NFA to be revamped from NFA 2009 onwards.

(Published in Deccan Herald, www.deccanherald.com, www.deccanheraldepaper.com, 26-12-2009)



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