Updated on: Saturday, June 01, 2019, 02:34 PM IST

NRI filmmaker to train camera on Lok Sabha polls


Patna:  California-based Indian filmmaker Ravi Verma is  set to make “Viva Democracy”, a documentary focussing on the nine-phased  16th Lok Sabha elections that  involve 814 million voters.

He says the  purpose is to show the “people’s perspective” on the battle of the  ballot and draw a contrast between the Indian and US election processes.

“We will shoot the documentary from the first week of April till the  end  of the Lok Sabha polls in May. We will mainly shoot in Bihar as well as  other places across India,” Verma, who hails from Katihar, around 350 km  from Patna, told IANS on phone from Rocklin, California.


He has received approval from the Ministry of External Affairs to make  the film. He added that the purpose is to show the contrast of the  election process in the two largest democracies – India and the US.

During the Lok Sabha elections, starting April 7, the filmmaker wishes  to capture the vibrant nature of the polls that he grew up watching. The  whole exercise of polling in 543 constituencies at about 930,000 polling  stations across the country will be over in 72 days.

Verma is keen to show how common people belonging to different economic  statuses, castes, gender, and religions view the election. In India,  elections are boisterous events with rallies and slogans.


Comparatively, elections in the US are sedate. “Shooting and capturing  India’s election from people’s perspective is a big challenge for a  documentary maker,” Verma said.

An alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)- Kanpur, Verma, who migrated to the US in the 1990s, has maintained a strong bond with his hometown. He owns a software firm in California and  he set up its  subsidiary firm in Katihar in 2005.

In 2013 he released “Journey of the Heart”, a documentary sponsored by the Government of India.


Last time he had brought crew from Hollywood to Bihar to shoot the  film, but this time he plans to use local talent to capture the election. He has been training a group of youngsters in Katihar in cinematography and  sound techniques.

(Imran Khan can be contacted at

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Published on: Thursday, March 27, 2014, 12:52 PM IST