Pariyerum Perumal and Kaala are among the films that will be screened at the inaugural New York Dalit Film and Cultural Festival to be held on Feb 23rd and 24th. Other much talked about films in this sensitive political space, like Masaan and Fandry will also be screened at the festival. This festival will be organized by a coalition of the Ambedkar International Mission USA, Ambedkar Association of North America, Boston Study Group and the Ambedkar Buddhist Association Texas. Directors Pa Ranjith and Nagraj Manjule will inaugurate the festival along with actress Niharika Singh.
A press note offered more details about the purpose of such a festival. “The event aims to start a dialogue on the lack of Dalit representation in films and expose to the world the nuances of Dalit life that are buried underneath the popular forms of artistic expressions. The selected movies and documentaries offer nuanced, never-before-seen forms of Dalit society and culture”, the note added.
The press note further added that the festival will also showcase art, literature, and photography by Dalits. Short films and documentaries will also be screened. One must commend such an initiative in a major global city like New York. This will go a long way in increasing the public awareness about these films and the messages that these films intended to convey. One hopes that the New York Dalit Film and Cultural Festival has a successful inaugural edition and goes from strength to strength in the coming years.