Saturday, November 11, 2006

How CPM blocked the screening of Taurus

Old news from the BBC.

Bengal communists rage over Lenin film
Taurus, a film by Russian director Alexander Sukorov on the last few years of Lenin's life, has led to a major controversy among the ruling Communists in the Indian state of West Bengal.

The film was to be screened in the Calcutta annual Film Festival on Friday.

The film potrays a weak and infirm leader, a stark contrast to the firebrand revolutionary who established the world's first communist state But it was withdrawn at the last moment.

Several senior Communist leaders have criticized the film for allegedly distorting the later life of Lenin.

But the state's Chief Minister, Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, a big film fan, was believed to have personally suggested the film for screening to the festival committee.

Portrait everywhere

Statues of Vladimir Ilyich Lenin may have vanished in many former Communist countries but he stands tall in the heart of Calcutta.

The city's main thoroughfare is named after him.

His potrait, along with that of his successor Stalin, are prominently displayed in offices of the ruling party.

But when Mr Bhattacharya suggested the screening of the film Taurus at this year's Calcutta Film Festival, little did he know many of his colleagues would react as sharply as they have.

The film on the last few years of Lenin, by Russian director Alexander Sukorov, potrays a weak and infirm leader, a stark contrast to the firebrand revolutionary who established the world's first communist state.

Earlier this week, Bengal's former Chief Minister Jyoti Basu and the Left coalition Chairman Biman Bose severely criticized the film and described it as a complete distortion of history.

Taken aback, Mr Bhattacharya said he would comment later.

A Communist cultural front started demonstrations in some film festival venues, demanding that the film not be screened.

On Friday the audience went in to see Taurus, only to be shown another film, Mother and Son, by the same director.

Many were annoyed.

Avoiding controversy

Festival director Angshu Sur said that the only print of Taurus they had received had to be sent off to London for screening in a festival this week.

But sources in the festival committee said the film had been withdrawn at the behest of the Chief Minister who was keen to avoid a controversy within the party.

The Chairman of the Film festival committee and a leading film and theatre personality, Soumitra Chatterji, told journalists the potrayal of Lenin in Taurus was close to the accounts given by his biographers.

Observers say the Communist party leadership are unhappy with the Chief Minister for taking some recent initiatives without prior approval of the party - and they say the leadership may have used Taurus to embarrass Mr Bhattacharya and show the people that the party, not the Chief Minister, is in charge.

Source : BBC

Tags: CPM



At 1:23 PM, Blogger ALI said...

Majlis Ittehadul Muslimeen MP Asaduddin Owaisi on Sachar Committee Report In Parliament

ASADUDDIN OWAISI MP (HYDERABAD) : Thank you for giving me this opportunity. I rise to support the Bill that has been tabled in the august House. I have got some important points to bring to the notice of the august House.
The Sachar Committee report has been tabled in this House. It clearly states the educational backwardness of the Muslim community. According to Sachar Report, there are 39 per cent OBCs and 0.8 per cent Scheduled Caste in the Muslim community.
I support this Bill which provides reservation in Central Universities to SCs, STs and OBCs. However, I would like to know as to how fair it is to deny the benefits of reservation on the basis of religion, especially after the Government has tabled the Sachar Report in this august House which shows how bad my educational standards are and my conditions are.
I would just like to quote one point here as far as the report is concerned. Page 73 of Sachar Report clearly says, “The percentage of population of graduates, as far as the Muslims are concerned, is 1.2 and those attending P.G. courses is 16.3.” It is lesser in Muslims than in dalits also. You are not implementing these minority universities over there. But why is it that I am being denied such benefits? Moreover, the Presidential Order of 1950 contravenes the basic fundamental rights given in the Constitution.
How is it that only SCs belonging or professing the religion of Hinduism or Sikhism or neo Buddhism are being given reservation? Why not Dalit Christians and Dalit Muslims? This question has to be pondered over by the Government. I would request you sincerely, Sir, that the Government should come forward and ensure that the 1950 Presidential Order, Schedule III is amended. It says that only a person professing Hinduism or Sikhism or neo Buddhism can be classified as Schedule Caste. How is that possible? This Report of yours clearly says this. There is this argument about Muslims and OBCs. Why is it such a low percentage is there? This has to be looked into.
Lastly, about Jamia Milia University, how is that the present Vice-Chancellor wants to implement this present Bill in Jamia Milia University? Why has the Vice-Chancellor overnight changed this position? Why are we being denied such benefits? I would request you that this issue has to be taken care of. They have applied to the National Minority Education Commission also. It is pending over there. If Jamia Milia University is not a minority University, then, which is a minority university? This is a very important question. These are important points I wanted to bring to the notice of the august House.
I support this Bill. I hope that this UPA Government will take affirmative action and will not deny us reservation under Article 16(4). If people are opposed to reservations to Muslims, they should look into the pre-native history of Article 16(4). It is none other than Sardar Vallabhai Patel, who has stated `classes’ means `Minorities’. He was the Chairman of that Advisory Committee. Why are Muslims having reservations in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka? Why can they not be given reservations nationwide? It has to be done. Literacy rate of 13 per cent of population is only 59. There is a huge difference between literate and educated persons. You can very well imagine 13 per cent of population with a literacy of 59 per cent. Hence, I would request that the Government should come forward with the proposal and I hope that the hon. Minister, when he stands up to reply would respond to this or this UPA Government has to amend 1950 Presidential Order. They have to take affirmative action under Articles 15(4) and 16(4).
Thank you.


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