HIGHLIGHTS

Water Film Festival 2011

 
Type: Event
Location: Auditorium & Atrium
City: Bangalore
Date: Fri, 2011/08/26 (All day)

Voices from the Waters

International Traveling Film Festival on Water 2011

dedicated to the rivers and streams of the universe

e-mail:                                                                     [email protected]

website:                                                                  www.voicesfromthewaters.com

Name and contact                                                  Georgekutty A.L

details of the Director                                                           Mobile; 09448064513

    

Summary of the Project:-

Voices from the Waters, International Film Festival was conceived in 2005, as an effective way of reaching out to the uninitiated on water issues with an emphasis on high school, college students and the youth. The programme aims to bring together grass-root level water activists, scientists, policy makers, film-makers, lecturers, scholars, artists, working professionals from across various fields to engage in a process of learning and debate on various water issues from around the world to resolve the growing drinking water crisis.

        Relevance to the context:

South India, infact the whole of India as well as the thirds world countries are a hot bed of water issues. Lakes are being auctioned off in the name of urban redevelopment, rivers are leased out to multinational corporations, prepaid water meters are being introduced in many third world countries, the water business is booming, growing in power and influence, The country is reeling either from drought or deluge, livelihoods are being lost, access to clean water for the common man is getting more and more difficult, privatization of water looms large, dams, once the temples of modern India, are now mechanisms of massive displacement and migration, inequity is rife in water distribution and management, the ancient rivers, rich ecosystems, are fast disappearing and turning into sewage canals under the brunt of urban sprawl, modern paradigms of development and incessant exploitation of  resources. The quality of drinking water is affected by the sewage and the flow of untreated effluents from the industries into the water bodies. There is also the sensitive issue of riparian rights over cross-border rivers that have been the cause of much upheaval, especially in  South India. The biggest danger that supplements all forms of exploitation is that the general public have not been informed or made aware of the urgency of these issues and the bleak future that awaits us if these trends continue unchecked. Voices from the Waters traveling film festival aims to counter this dangerous apathy by exposing the audiences to these issues and by creating dialogue and debate. Primarily we are concentrating on building awareness among the public on water issues as the first step towards community involvement to resolve the water crisis in the future.

 

Our History

In 2004, Bangalore Film Society initiated a forum titled Water Journeys, Forum for the Fundamental Right to Water with the objectives of creating awareness among the youth about the increasing scarcity of potable water for the poor for their lives and livelihood as well as to engage people in conservation of water. We did succeed in mobilizing sizeable number of college students from the city to demonstrate against privatization of water by the multinational companies like the Coca cola, Pepsi and so on. The response was very good also because these companies were in the news for marketing substandard bottled drinks which the youngsters consumed a plenty. Schools, colleges and the governments of many states in India banned the soft drinks produced by Coca cola and Pepsi after Centre for Environmental Studies published their report on the contents of these drinks. It is at this juncture we realised that there are water issues not connected with privatization at all. For example the diversion of water from the villages to the cities making villages thirst. There are the issues of mining, river pollution, drying up rivers and lakes, floods, droughts, global warming and climate change. To string together various ways through which water affects our lives and how global the issues are we started the International film festival ‘Voices from the Waters’.

 

Mission:

        The quality of a civilization is reflected in the quality of its rivers and streams

While there is a global water crisis, the regions the worst affected are Asian, African and Latin American continents.  In India it is a luxury to have clean drinking water.  Even the affluent residential areas receive water only once in two days. Uninterrupted water supply to the citizens is nonexistent. Almost 80% of the people in all major cities and towns live on very little water supplied by the private tankers and tube wells. Most of the available water is contaminated due to poor sanitation facilities. Every river in any city in India is turned into sewage. In the villages too         people walk for miles to procure their potable water and as their livelihood is affected by lack adequate water to carry on agricultural activities, they migrate to the cities and towns and live in terrible poverty bordering on destitution. According to the recent world bank         survey,there will not be any ground water in India by 2020. They have also predicted that all major cities in India will go dry more or less at the same time causing immense strife to the life worlds. In this context , the festival aims to sensitise and motivate       people to engage in water conservation  and  sanitation to  improve  the  quality  of drinking  water  and the  quality

of life.

 

Structure of events:

1.         Walk for water by the college students highlighting water issues before the festival

2.       Screening of previous years of films at colleges to motivate the students.

3.       Inauguration of Voices from the Waters International Film Festival at Christ University auditorium on
August 25th 2011.

4.       Film screenings for the public at six venues in Bangalore from 26th to the 28th August 2011

5.       Interaction with film directors and grass root level activists to high light the water issues

6.       Painting exhibition by artists at the venue of the film screening

7.       Photo exhibition at the festival venue

8.       Art installation high lighting water issues

9.       Recital of water songs, performance of street theatre

10.      Conference on water issues on 29th August

11.        Publications i. brochures. 2. Posters. 3.banners

12.      Taking the films to colleges across Karnataka over a period of one year September 2011 to August 2012

 

Networking

Over the last five years our initiatives has grown with many partners coming forward to join us. They are Alliance Francaise de Bangalore; Charter for Human Responsibilities- Asia Chapter; SVARAJ; FLEFF, New York; YWCA; Federation of Film Societies of India (FFSI); Samvada, Suchitra Film Society and Karnataka Chalanachitra Academy (KCA).

Apart from the above, over the years many environmental film festivals across the world has utilized our collection of films for their festivals. UN university Tokyo has expressed keen interest to organize this festival at least six locations in Japan. Universities in the Amazon region too have keen interest in organizing this festival. These responses affirm the international relevance of this film festival

 

        Likely  outcomes and impacts:

1.               Increased awareness at the grass root level about the shortage of potable water across the globe and its causes.

2         A deeper reflection among the youth and participants on development practices and policies which would enhance water conservation.

3.         Develop discussions on availability, use and conservation of water at all levels.

4.         Network with agencies involved in the protection and preservation of lakes, rivers and other water bodies.

5.         Develop a critique of the state and central governments’ water policy.

6.         Discuss with farmers on dry land and organic (traditional) farming which involves reintroduction of traditional seeds which is cost effective and needs less water.

7.         Motivate the college students to reforest the catchments areas of rivers and streams as well as the waste lands.

8.         Develop grass root level understanding of the issue in different regions and the responses of the people to resolve the water scarcity

9.         Work towards building a global movement of the people to restore the rivers and streams

10.        Rethink development, economic growth keeping environmental concerns.