A complaint has been registered at Amboli police station against the Jio MAMI 18th Mumbai Film Festival with Star, where a Pakistani film will be screened later this month.
The Jio MAMI 18th Mumbai Film Festival with Star, which will begin from 20 October, will showcase the 1959 Pakistani film titled Jago Hua Savera, directed by AJ Kardar. The film is being screened in the fest’s ‘Restored Classics’ section, which is headed by Dhobi Ghat director Kiran Rao.
Prithvi Mhaske, who filed the complaint on Saturday, told IANS: “We have filed a complaint at Amboli police station against MAMI film festival which has plans to showcase a Pakistani film at the festival. Our intentions are very clear. We will protest against the festival if they showcase this film. We will be protesting outside Infinity Mall, where the event is taking place.”
Mhaske is the president of Sangharsh Foundation, an NGO in Mumbai.
In his letter to the police, Mhaske said: “The organisers of this event are more likely to flare outrage among people by screening this Pakistani film in their festival. This will just not be acceptable as it will give rise to more tension among the people. Moreover, IMPPA has also decided to ban Pakistani actors from working in Bollywood and also almost all single screen theatres have decided to boycott movies of Pakistani actors. So, why (are) the organisers of the Mumbai Film Festival pouring so much love towards Pakistani actors?”
Mhaske also told PTI, “If the organisers do not stop the film’s screening, my workers will stall (it).”
Senior PI with the Amboli Police Station Bharat Gaikwad said that he had received the complain from Mhaske, and had “summoned both the parties to go into the merits of the application”.
Over 180 films from 54 countries, including features, documentaries, short films are to be showcased at the Mumbai Film Festival.
Jago Hua Savera (Day Shall Dawn) depicts life in a small fishing village in East Bengal (now Bangladesh; then part of Pakistan). It was written by the poet Faiz Ahmad Faiz, and recently restored, with a screening at the Cannes Film Festival.
After the 18 September terrorist attack at the Uri army camp, relations between India and Pakistan have been strained. The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena had issued an ultimatum to Pakistani artistes to leave India and said the party would not let their movies release in India.
The Indian Motion Picture Producers Association passed a resolution banning Pakistanis from working in films being made in India as they were upset that many Pakistani artistes did not condemn the incident.
In retaliation, some Pakistani theatre chain owners banned the screening of Indian films.