Bhopal: Women can’t take decisions about their life in my village, says young filmmaker from Rajasthan

18 short films made by 25 fellows from 4 states screened at the 2-day Green Hub Central India festival at city’s Ravindra Convention Centre.

SmitaUpdated: Sunday, July 17, 2022, 06:37 PM IST
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BHOPAL (Madhya Pradesh): The maker of ‘Meri Taakat Mujhse Hai, Suraj Meena says that women and girls in her village in Rajasthan still cannot decide what they want to wear, what they want to study, what they want to do with their life.

“I am dressed in jeans and a top here. But back home, I cannot wear anything except ghagra-choli’. And married women have to cover their faces,” the twenty-two-year-old Suraj, who hails from a small village in the Udaipur district of Rajasthan told the Free Press.

Suraj is among the 25 youngsters who have gathered in the city for the screening of their short films at the two-day Green Hub Central India Festival 2022. The festival concluded at the Ravindra Convention Centre on Sunday.

The eight-minute film, which took five-six months to produce, themed on how men take decisions about the lives of women were screened at the fest. “This may appear to be a small matter for others but for us, it is a big issue,” the filmmaker said on the sideline of the event.

Suraj said that she didn’t inform her family that she was going to produce a film. “They would have straight denied permission,” she said. A graduate in geography, Suraj’s father is a farmer. She wants to pursue her Masters in social work.

Another fellow, Arti Singh from Chhattisgarh has made a short film on women farmers of Rajasthan titled ‘Kisan Hoon, Nidar Hoon’. Arti has produced another film, ‘Pahaar Se Bane Pahaari Korba’ along with another fellow Arvind Dohre.

“I want to use films as a medium to preserve the culture of the Adivasis. The traditional dresses, rituals, and lifestyle of the Adivasis are getting extinct and we need to preserve it,” she said.

Under the Green Hub Central India (GHCI) project, initiated in 2021, a 10-month fellowship is awarded to rural and tribal youth from four states - Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Jharkhand. They are supposed to work on diverse issues including the environment, sustainable farming, nature-linked livelihoods, etc. A total of 18 films were screened at the fest.

We task our fellows with making films because the process of filmmaking involves a lot of self-learning. It gives you a lot of exposure and loads of experiential learning. We organized the fest for the first time in central India. - Rita Banerjee, Founder, Green Hub Central India.

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