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New Delhi : The National Human Rights Commission ( NHRC), India, has selected ‘Thalsar Bangsar’ by Ravindra Manik Jadav for the first prize of Rs 2 lakh as a part of its Short Film Award Competition-2020. It is in Kokani with sub-titles in English. The film seeks to raise the concerns and the conflict between practicing the folk traditions and the challenges of the contemporary times for a sustainable source of livelihood through education.

The Second prize of Rs. 1.5 lakh will jointly go to ‘Womb of Melghat’ by Nitin Vasantrao Ganorkar and ‘Annam’ by Thomas Jacob. ‘Womb of Melghat’ raises the issue of violation of the Human Rights of Tribals displaced from the Melghat Tiger Reserves of Maharashtra. It is in ‘Korku’ and Hindi with subtitles in English. ‘Annam’ focuses on the Right to food and clean Environment. It is in Malayalam with subtitles in English.

The Third prize of Rs. 1 lakh will jointly go to ‘And thus man gets crushed again and again’ by Jaya Rose and ‘Suppar’ by Vinod Garud. ‘And thus man gets crushed again and again’ focuses on the Business activities leading to Environmental hazards and violation of Right to life and livelihood. It is in Malayalam with subtitles in English. ‘Suppar’ film raises concerns with the reference to Right to Healthcare and non-availability of proper health care facilities and related insensitivity in rural and semi urban areas through the struggle of a child to save the life of his ailing elderly grandmother. The film is in Marathi with subtitles in English.

Besides these, three cash awards, the Commission has also decided to give a certificate of ‘Special Mention’ to three films. They are:

  1. ‘Dumroo’ is a take on Right to Education and the realities on the ground. The film is in Marathi with subtitles in English.by Rashid Usman Nimbalkar
  2. ‘Saraswati’ by Revar Gauravsinh is in the backdrop of Right to Education. It depicts challenges in the implementation of system of online classes, which as a concept may be fine but doesn’t serve much purpose for the students in rural areas who do not have facilities to connect with these classes and promotes youth initiatives to reach such children and help them in the process of learning. The film is in Hindi with subtitles in English.
  3. ‘The women on that street’ by Gautham Purushottam Berde raises concerns of the plight and human rights of Sex Workers and their children which worsened during the COVID-19 Pandemic. The film is in English.

The films were selected by a Jury chaired by NHRC Member, Dr  D M Mulay, and comprising senior officers of the Commission: Bimbadhar Pradhan, Secretary General and  Anita Sinha, JS (P&T), and National award winning filmmaker  Arun Chadha. In view of the COVID-19 guidelines, the Commission has decided to distribute the awards to the winners through an online function, dates for which will be announced soon, said an NHRC release.

The aim of the NHRC Short Film Award Scheme is to encourage and acknowledge cinematic and creative efforts towards the promotion and protection of human rights. This is the Sixth year of this competition, which received tremendous response with 93 entries from various parts of the country.