Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur inaugurated the first-ever Himalayan Film Festival 2021 at Sanskriti Kendra, Leh on Friday. He kicked off the festival which will be held in Leh district for five days from September 24-28. On the first day of the festival, Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani's film Shershaah will be screened. Also, Sidharth is in Leh to attend the screening. The opening ceremony was attended by Vishnuvardhan, the director of the film Shershah along with Siddharth.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Union Minister Anurag Thakur said, "It will be our endeavour to organize more and more film festivals, youth festivals and winter games here in Leh Ladakh so that the youth of this place can get more opportunities to move forward."
"The festival will comprise of various segments to enthral the audience, including screening of popular films at the Sindhu Sanskriti Auditorium, Leh. Workshops and masterclasses will be organised wherein filmmakers, critics and technicians from the Himalayan region will be invited to impart knowledge and skill to local film enthusiasts. This will serve as a necessary stimulus to ignite a creative leaning towards filmmaking," a statement said.
The festival will also have a documentary and short-film competitions, a food festival, music fest, cultural shows in collaboration with the Department of Culture to showcase the rich cultural variety of Ladakh, the ministry said.
"The Himalayan region of India attracts filmmakers from all around the globe due to its scenic endowment.
The unique geography of the region is widely documented along with its indigenous people, traditional skills, and occupations. The film festival in this context presents an opportunity for local filmmakers to narrate their stories to a wider audience," it said.
In the last two decades, the independent film industry in the region has taken shape, with filmmakers producing films in local language, it said, adding that the same period has also seen rapid electrification in the region which is a prerequisite for the development of the audio-visual sector.