The movie ‘The Kashmir Files’ made the headlines on the final day of the 53rd International Film Festival of India, with the jury calling the film ‘propoganda’. Israeli filmmaker Nadav Lapid, the jury head at the festival, criticised the Vivek Agnihotri film during the closing ceremony.
The film, which focuses on the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley in the 1990s, has been mired in controversy since its release in March.
Here is what Nadav Lapid said about ‘The Kashmir Files’:
“All of us were disturbed and shocked by the 15th film – the movie ‘The Kashmir Files’. That felt to us like a propaganda, vulgar movie, inappropriate for an artistic competitive section of such a prestigious film festival. I feel totally comfortable to share openly these feelings here with you on this stage. In the spirit of the festival, can surely accept a critical discussion, which is essential for art and life.”
Directed by Vivek Agnihotri, ‘The Kashmir Files’ stars Anupam Kher, Darshan Kumar, Mithun Chakraborty, and Pallavi Joshi among others.
Riding on overwhelming government support and tax breaks from several states across the country, the controversial movie became one of the highest grossing Hindi film of the year. It also came under bitter criticism as it’s unprecedented for the government to put its weight behind a commercial movie. Moreover, the sensitive political nature of the film and charges of inaccuracy/deliberate misrepresentation of facts led to accusations of the government indulging in propaganda.