Paban Kumar’s Phum Shang selected in Intl Competition section of MIFF 2016

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NEW DELHI, Dec 18 (MIC): Haobam Paban Kumar’s national award winning non-feature film- Phum Shang (Floating Life) was selected in the international competition section for the documentary film under 60 minutes category of the 14th edition of Mumbai International Festival for Documentary, Short and Animation Films, popularly known as MIFF, which will be held between January 28 to February 03, 2016 in Mumbai.

Announcement was made by the MIFF on Thursday.

Films made in India and abroad during September 1, 2013 to August 31, 2015 were eligible for the festival. Entries were previewed by the Pre-selection Committee and then the shortlisted films were again previewed by the Selection Committee to select the final films for the competition sections.

Five films namely Hard To Believe directed by Ken Stone from USA, Phum Sang by Haobam Paban Kumar from India, The Deer, Tree and Me by Teena Kaur from India, Tashi and the Monk by Johnny Burke and Andrew Hinton from UK and The Boy From My Window by Kesang Tsetan from Nepal will vie for the Best Documentary Film in the category which carries the Golden Conch and Rupees three lakhs to the Director and the Golden Conch and Rupees two lakhs to the Producer of the film.

Hard To Believe is a 56-minute documentary film that explores the silence of the mass media, the political community, and the medical community surrounding the crime of forced live organ harvesting in China. Investigators estimate that up to 10,000 prisoners of conscience were killed annually for the sale of their organs after 2001, when China’s prison population exploded after the Chinese Communist Party began persecuting any citizen practicing the Falun Gong spiritual discipline.

Phum Sang depicts Loktak, the largest freshwater lake in North East India characterized by its unique floating biomass `phumdi`, which is the primary source of livelihood for the fishermen who live there. The film covers not only the rich and abundant bio-diversity of the Loktak area but also delves into serious issues as fallout of development induced poverty.

The Deer, Tree and Me tells about the relationship between human beings and nature.

Tashi and the Monk shows how kindness and empathy can transform lives, spotlighting one man’s altruistic vision and the journey of one troubled child who, with the help of a supportive community, is able to overcome her past and start new.

The Boy from the Window tells about a boy who carries out domestic chores like sweeping, washing, watering plants. Every day, he also witness to an alternate reality.

The festival will have, apart from International and National competition, screening of films in MIFF Prism, Jury retrospectives, Animation and other packages from different countries and festivals, children’s documentary films, North East DD package, FD and PSBT films, homages etc, making it a wholesome viewing experience for the delegates of MIFF-2016. The festival will also have master classes by master film makers, workshops, seminar and Open Forum by IDPA.

The first ever International Film Festival for Documentary, Short and Animation Films was held in the year 1990. This prestigious biennial event is organized by Films Division of India, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting with the active collaboration of Government of Maharashtra and the Indian Documentary Producers’ Association. The city of Mumbai is the permanent venue of the festival.

MIFF is one of the most prestigious festival in the documentary, short and animation genre at par with International Film Festivals like Leipzig, Berlin, Oberhausen, Cracow and Tampere etc

This is the second time for Haobam Paban Kumar who got the selection of his film in the International competition of the MIFF. In MIFF 2006, his film- AFSPA 1958 was awarded International Jury Award with the prize money of Rupees one lakh and the prestigious International FIPRESCI Critics Award with certificate of merit in the international competition for documentary films.

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