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Three Bangladeshi films at IFFSA

Cultural Correspondent

“A scene from Ekattorer Ma Jononi”.

International Film Festival of South Asia (IFFSA), the biggest South Asian Film Festival in North America was launched at Canadian city of Toronto on Thursday.
This ten day extravaganza showcases a diverse, language independent, selection of the best feature films, documentaries and short films from around the world, on themes of South Asian cultures and identities.
In addition, the festival also features concerts, gala events, film parties, seminars, workshops and networking opportunities with government representatives, business leaders, local organizations that support film development, film stars, producers, directors, members of the media and more.
The festival includes two segments : International Film Festival of South Asia (IFFSA) - Toronto with Punjabi International Film Festival (PIFF) - Toronto as a sub segment.
Exciting and glamorous events have been planned at various pristine and prestigious venues in the cities of Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, Scarborough, Richmond Hill, and Oakville.
The Festival also aims to provide a platform to young South Asian Canadians to showcase their creativity.
A total of three Bangla feature films - 'Ekattorer Ma Jononi', 'Gariwala' and 'Bapjaner Bioskope'- will be screened at the 'International Film Festival of South Asian 2015' to be held on May 14-18 in Toronto.
Actors Shahiduzzaman Selim, Rokeya Prachi, Nipun, Shah Alam Kiron and Ashraf Shishir are attending the festival.
'Ekattorer Ma Jononi', a film based on the country's Liberation War, has been directed by Shah Alam Kiran. The film, which has been produced by the government donation, has made attempts just to let the new generation know about the sacrifices in 1971. Prominent artiste Mishu Chowdhury has played an important role in the film and she has explored the character of an oppressed woman of Liberation War.
'Ekattorer Ma Jononi' has been adapted from the novel 'Jononi Sahoshini 1971' by noted writer Anisul Haque. The cast of the play includes Mishu Chowdhury, Nasrin Akter Nipun, Agun, Shakil Ahmed, MM Morshed, Sazu and Sohan, among others. 'Gariwala', a feature film directed by Ashraf Shishir, portrays the touchy story of two siblings and their mother who fight to get rid of acute poverty.
The film has also been selected for screening at two film festivals in South America and North America recently. The film was screened at 'Julien Dubuque International Film Festival' in Iowa, the USA, held on April 23-26 and at 'BioBioCine, Concepción International Film Festival 2015' in Chile on April 23-27.
'Gariwala', a Bangla feature film, also won the best screenplay award at the North Carolina Film Festival in the USA. Ashraf Shishir, director and script writer of the movie, received the best screenplay award at the festival held on January 24-25 this year. 'Gariwala' also bagged the best supporting actor award and the best child artiste award at the carnival. Earlier, 'Gariwala' competed at the three-day 'Rafi Peer International Film Festival' in Lahore on December 25-27. The cast of the film includes Rokeya Prachi, Raisul Islam Asad, Masum Aziz, Imran and Saki Farzana, among others. The film was also screened at the 'Fourth Athens International Digital Film Festival' on December 16 last year.
Besides, the film was also screened at 'Sharjah International Children's Film Festival' held on October 19-24 and 'Kolkata International Film Festival' on November 9-17 in 2014.
Ashraf Shishir is a talented, young film director and scriptwriter. His famous works include 'The Innocence', 'Gaariwala', 'The Art & Religion', 'The Daily Refuse', 'The Fukuwaka Method, and 'The Ages'. 'Bap Janer Bioscope', a feature film directed by Riazul Riju, features Shahiduzzaman Selim, Sanjida Tonmoy, Shatabdi Wadud and Masud Mohiduddin in leading roles.

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Cultural Correspondent

“A scene from Ekattorer Ma Jononi”.

International Film Festival of South Asia (IFFSA), the biggest South Asian Film Festival in North America was launched at Canadian city of Toronto on Thursday.
This ten day extravaganza showcases a diverse, language independent, selection of the best feature films, documentaries and short films from around the world, on themes of South Asian cultures and identities.
In addition, the festival also features concerts, gala events, film parties, seminars, workshops and networking opportunities with government representatives, business leaders, local organizations that support film development, film stars, producers, directors, members of the media and more.
The festival includes two segments : International Film Festival of South Asia (IFFSA) - Toronto with Punjabi International Film Festival (PIFF) - Toronto as a sub segment.
Exciting and glamorous events have been planned at various pristine and prestigious venues in the cities of Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, Scarborough, Richmond Hill, and Oakville.
The Festival also aims to provide a platform to young South Asian Canadians to showcase their creativity.
A total of three Bangla feature films - 'Ekattorer Ma Jononi', 'Gariwala' and 'Bapjaner Bioskope'- will be screened at the 'International Film Festival of South Asian 2015' to be held on May 14-18 in Toronto.
Actors Shahiduzzaman Selim, Rokeya Prachi, Nipun, Shah Alam Kiron and Ashraf Shishir are attending the festival.
'Ekattorer Ma Jononi', a film based on the country's Liberation War, has been directed by Shah Alam Kiran. The film, which has been produced by the government donation, has made attempts just to let the new generation know about the sacrifices in 1971. Prominent artiste Mishu Chowdhury has played an important role in the film and she has explored the character of an oppressed woman of Liberation War.
'Ekattorer Ma Jononi' has been adapted from the novel 'Jononi Sahoshini 1971' by noted writer Anisul Haque. The cast of the play includes Mishu Chowdhury, Nasrin Akter Nipun, Agun, Shakil Ahmed, MM Morshed, Sazu and Sohan, among others. 'Gariwala', a feature film directed by Ashraf Shishir, portrays the touchy story of two siblings and their mother who fight to get rid of acute poverty.
The film has also been selected for screening at two film festivals in South America and North America recently. The film was screened at 'Julien Dubuque International Film Festival' in Iowa, the USA, held on April 23-26 and at 'BioBioCine, Concepción International Film Festival 2015' in Chile on April 23-27.
'Gariwala', a Bangla feature film, also won the best screenplay award at the North Carolina Film Festival in the USA. Ashraf Shishir, director and script writer of the movie, received the best screenplay award at the festival held on January 24-25 this year. 'Gariwala' also bagged the best supporting actor award and the best child artiste award at the carnival. Earlier, 'Gariwala' competed at the three-day 'Rafi Peer International Film Festival' in Lahore on December 25-27. The cast of the film includes Rokeya Prachi, Raisul Islam Asad, Masum Aziz, Imran and Saki Farzana, among others. The film was also screened at the 'Fourth Athens International Digital Film Festival' on December 16 last year.
Besides, the film was also screened at 'Sharjah International Children's Film Festival' held on October 19-24 and 'Kolkata International Film Festival' on November 9-17 in 2014.
Ashraf Shishir is a talented, young film director and scriptwriter. His famous works include 'The Innocence', 'Gaariwala', 'The Art & Religion', 'The Daily Refuse', 'The Fukuwaka Method, and 'The Ages'. 'Bap Janer Bioscope', a feature film directed by Riazul Riju, features Shahiduzzaman Selim, Sanjida Tonmoy, Shatabdi Wadud and Masud Mohiduddin in leading roles.


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Rabindra Puraskar for Sadi and Sanat Kumar

Cultural Correspondent

Singer Sadi Muhammad receives Rabindra Padak from the cultural affairs minister Asaduzzaman Noor at Bangla Academy's auditorium on Sunday.

Rabindra Sangeet singer Sadi Muhammad and Tagore researcher Sanatkumar Saha have been awarded Bangla Academy Rabindra Puraskar at a programme on Sunday.
Cultural affairs minister Asaduzzaman Noor handed over a crest and a token gift of Tk 5,000 to each of the award recipients at the programme, which was presided over by the academy's chairman professor emeritus Anisuzzaman.
The programme was organised by the Bangla Aacademy to celebrate Tagore's 154th birth anniversary. The programme included a discussion session a cultural show.
Professor Hayat Mamud delivered the Tagore commemorative lecture. In his speech, he highlighted Tagore's consciousness of his country, the world outside and the natural world that underlies most of his works.
Both of the Rabindra Puraskar winners in their speeches expressed gratitude for the honour, saying it is an acknowledgement of their dedication and hard work related to Tagore.
Professor Anisuzzaman talked about the multi-dimensional contribution of the Nobel Laureate poet.
Following the discussion, Laila Afroz and Samiul Islam recited Tagore's poems while Lily Islam, Anima Roy and Swapnil Sajib rendered Tagore songs.

Comment

Cultural Correspondent

Singer Sadi Muhammad receives Rabindra Padak from the cultural affairs minister Asaduzzaman Noor at Bangla Academy's auditorium on Sunday.

Rabindra Sangeet singer Sadi Muhammad and Tagore researcher Sanatkumar Saha have been awarded Bangla Academy Rabindra Puraskar at a programme on Sunday.
Cultural affairs minister Asaduzzaman Noor handed over a crest and a token gift of Tk 5,000 to each of the award recipients at the programme, which was presided over by the academy's chairman professor emeritus Anisuzzaman.
The programme was organised by the Bangla Aacademy to celebrate Tagore's 154th birth anniversary. The programme included a discussion session a cultural show.
Professor Hayat Mamud delivered the Tagore commemorative lecture. In his speech, he highlighted Tagore's consciousness of his country, the world outside and the natural world that underlies most of his works.
Both of the Rabindra Puraskar winners in their speeches expressed gratitude for the honour, saying it is an acknowledgement of their dedication and hard work related to Tagore.
Professor Anisuzzaman talked about the multi-dimensional contribution of the Nobel Laureate poet.
Following the discussion, Laila Afroz and Samiul Islam recited Tagore's poems while Lily Islam, Anima Roy and Swapnil Sajib rendered Tagore songs.


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Epic end of Suraiya’s romance with Dev Anand

Shamsuddin Ahmed

Suraiya, iconic singer-actress earned fame by romantic role in Hindi films in 1940-50s, bestowed with the award Malika-e-Tamanna (Queen of melody), but was deprived of her heart’s desire to marry co-star Dev Anand with whom she was in deep love.
Her songs ­ Man-mor hua matwala, yeh kisne jadoo dala re yeh kisne jadoo dala; Kiya cheez hai mahabbat; piya mor gya rangon, waha se kia telephone ­ are among many songs that still rings in the ears of movie-goers in those days. Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru eloquently praised her role as lover of married Ghalib in the film Miza Ghalib saying: tumne Mirza Ghalib ka roh zinda kar diya.
Born to the owner of a small furniture shop in Gujranwala, Punjab, (which is in modern-day Pakistan). She was the only child of her parents. She was not formally trained in music; yet she went on to become a successful singing actress.
Later her father moved to Lahore and Suraiya was taken to Bombay on the request of her mother, maternal grandmother and uncle. No one heard of Suraiya’s father again after that time.
She attended New Girls’ also known as J.B. Petit High School for Girls, in Fort, Mumbai. She received religious Islamic teachings in Persian at home.
Suraiya made her debut as a child artist in Usne Kya Socha (1937). She got a prominent role as a child artist with the help of her uncle Zahoor, who was then a popular villain actor. During a holiday from school in 1941, she accompanied him to Mohan Studios to see the shooting of the film Taj Mahal which was being directed by Nanubhai Vakil. Vakil noticed Suraiya and not having in his mind at that time any particular young girl to play the role of young Mumtaz Mahal in Taj mahal, selected Suraiya to play that role.
As an Child artist, Suraiya entered the film industry with Taj Mahal (1941), for which maestro S.D. Burman, who was till then known for his Bengali songs, rendered his first Hindi song Prem ki pyaari nishani under the musical baton of Madhulal Master.
Suraiya’s next assignment was for Tamanna (1942), for which she also rendered her first duet with then budding singer Mannadey – Jaago aayi usha. It was tuned by Manna’s uncle the well known singer, music director and actor K.C. Dey.
Suraiya played in 65 films of which seven co-starred with Dev Anand. Their clandestine love was known as the romance rose to its zenith when they paired in lead role for Afsar in 1950. While shooting for the movie their affair became a hot topic for Bombay tabloids. Thereafter, she was not allowed to meet with Dev. Her maternal grandmother (Naani) who was supreme in the family was vehemently opposed to her marriage with Dev Anand, a Hindu, although her mother was sympathetic to her wish. But their affair continued secretly by exchange of chits through friends.
How their love ended is nothing short of an epic story, the main focus here for the readers to recall their first love ­ I’m sure everyone desired someone but that did not culminated in marriage.
One day Dev Anand received back a chit from Suraiya that said, “I love you …am dying to meet you. Call me tomorrow at 7 pm. I shall be near the phone.” Dev phoned on time. She picked up and as soon as she started pouring in loving words her notorious Naani came, snatched the receiver and rested it with a bang to the bewilderment of Dev. Taking courage again he phoned. Picking up the phone Naani harshly shouted at him, threatened him of handing over to the police.
Frustrated, he phoned again after several hours. This time her mother received the call. They recognized each other’s voice. He wanted Suraiya to talk and wished they must meet soon. Mother told him that she has been crying and suggested him to come at 11-30 tomorrow night. She will arrange their meeting at the rooftop. She will be up on the terrace.
He came back home happy. But in a second thought he doubted it could be a ploy to catch him, land into police lockup and proclaimed him a sneaky scoundrel in all the newspapers. After debates inside him, Dev went to his friend Tara, now a police inspector. They made a plan. Each of them will carry torch light. Tara with his revolver shall wait near the building and rush up to rescue Dev if and when he flashes torch light down to him.
Dev went on time to the rooftop and found Suraiya was sitting by the water-tank. They embraced each other - a long, hot embrace that said everything. After a long silence they looked at each other. As he stroked her hair, she held her lips up to him, ready for a kiss. The kiss lingered till eternity, as the angels saw them from above. She wept. He consoled her. She smiled a smile that fairies would envy. “Will you marry me?” Dev asked Suraiya with a solemn pledge to protect her even at the cost of his life. She hugged him again and nodded, mumbling “ I love you, I love you, I love you.”
The following day Dev bought a diamond ring at Rs. 3,000 to adorn the Suraiya’s finger as a sign of their marriage. He repeatedly attempted in vain to contact her who was now under strict guard. He sent the ring to her by a messenger. She was charmed and took the ring quietly inside her room to treasure it in a box. Thereafter they could never meet, nor a messenger allowed entry in the building. Her Naani declared she would give up her life or Suraiya would be eliminated if she married Dev Anand. She wept and wept and finally yielded to the pressure the family mounted on her.
Later, as an act of desperate frustration, she took the ring sent by Dev to the seaside, and looking at it for the last time, with all the love she had in her heart for him, threw it far into the sea, to sing songs about her romance to the rising and falling tides.
Suraiya never married and died of cancer in January 2004 at the age of 74.
Dev Anand forgot her and married co-star Kalpana Kartik. Dev Anand died at the age of 88 in a heart attack on December 3, 2011 in London , where he was for medical treatment.
Bollywood’s evergreen superstar, Dev Anand, had romanced many beautiful women on the screen and even settled with one, but before death the octogenarian had, for the first time ever, professed his love for co-star Suraiya.
Dev Anand has admitted to have loved her and has made a special mention of this in his autobiography titled Romancing With Life.
“Yes. I loved Suraiya. It was a very important chapter of my life as I was growing. I was young and in love for the first time,”, he confesses.

Comment

Shamsuddin Ahmed

Suraiya, iconic singer-actress earned fame by romantic role in Hindi films in 1940-50s, bestowed with the award Malika-e-Tamanna (Queen of melody), but was deprived of her heart’s desire to marry co-star Dev Anand with whom she was in deep love.
Her songs ­ Man-mor hua matwala, yeh kisne jadoo dala re yeh kisne jadoo dala; Kiya cheez hai mahabbat; piya mor gya rangon, waha se kia telephone ­ are among many songs that still rings in the ears of movie-goers in those days. Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru eloquently praised her role as lover of married Ghalib in the film Miza Ghalib saying: tumne Mirza Ghalib ka roh zinda kar diya.
Born to the owner of a small furniture shop in Gujranwala, Punjab, (which is in modern-day Pakistan). She was the only child of her parents. She was not formally trained in music; yet she went on to become a successful singing actress.
Later her father moved to Lahore and Suraiya was taken to Bombay on the request of her mother, maternal grandmother and uncle. No one heard of Suraiya’s father again after that time.
She attended New Girls’ also known as J.B. Petit High School for Girls, in Fort, Mumbai. She received religious Islamic teachings in Persian at home.
Suraiya made her debut as a child artist in Usne Kya Socha (1937). She got a prominent role as a child artist with the help of her uncle Zahoor, who was then a popular villain actor. During a holiday from school in 1941, she accompanied him to Mohan Studios to see the shooting of the film Taj Mahal which was being directed by Nanubhai Vakil. Vakil noticed Suraiya and not having in his mind at that time any particular young girl to play the role of young Mumtaz Mahal in Taj mahal, selected Suraiya to play that role.
As an Child artist, Suraiya entered the film industry with Taj Mahal (1941), for which maestro S.D. Burman, who was till then known for his Bengali songs, rendered his first Hindi song Prem ki pyaari nishani under the musical baton of Madhulal Master.
Suraiya’s next assignment was for Tamanna (1942), for which she also rendered her first duet with then budding singer Mannadey – Jaago aayi usha. It was tuned by Manna’s uncle the well known singer, music director and actor K.C. Dey.
Suraiya played in 65 films of which seven co-starred with Dev Anand. Their clandestine love was known as the romance rose to its zenith when they paired in lead role for Afsar in 1950. While shooting for the movie their affair became a hot topic for Bombay tabloids. Thereafter, she was not allowed to meet with Dev. Her maternal grandmother (Naani) who was supreme in the family was vehemently opposed to her marriage with Dev Anand, a Hindu, although her mother was sympathetic to her wish. But their affair continued secretly by exchange of chits through friends.
How their love ended is nothing short of an epic story, the main focus here for the readers to recall their first love ­ I’m sure everyone desired someone but that did not culminated in marriage.
One day Dev Anand received back a chit from Suraiya that said, “I love you …am dying to meet you. Call me tomorrow at 7 pm. I shall be near the phone.” Dev phoned on time. She picked up and as soon as she started pouring in loving words her notorious Naani came, snatched the receiver and rested it with a bang to the bewilderment of Dev. Taking courage again he phoned. Picking up the phone Naani harshly shouted at him, threatened him of handing over to the police.
Frustrated, he phoned again after several hours. This time her mother received the call. They recognized each other’s voice. He wanted Suraiya to talk and wished they must meet soon. Mother told him that she has been crying and suggested him to come at 11-30 tomorrow night. She will arrange their meeting at the rooftop. She will be up on the terrace.
He came back home happy. But in a second thought he doubted it could be a ploy to catch him, land into police lockup and proclaimed him a sneaky scoundrel in all the newspapers. After debates inside him, Dev went to his friend Tara, now a police inspector. They made a plan. Each of them will carry torch light. Tara with his revolver shall wait near the building and rush up to rescue Dev if and when he flashes torch light down to him.
Dev went on time to the rooftop and found Suraiya was sitting by the water-tank. They embraced each other - a long, hot embrace that said everything. After a long silence they looked at each other. As he stroked her hair, she held her lips up to him, ready for a kiss. The kiss lingered till eternity, as the angels saw them from above. She wept. He consoled her. She smiled a smile that fairies would envy. “Will you marry me?” Dev asked Suraiya with a solemn pledge to protect her even at the cost of his life. She hugged him again and nodded, mumbling “ I love you, I love you, I love you.”
The following day Dev bought a diamond ring at Rs. 3,000 to adorn the Suraiya’s finger as a sign of their marriage. He repeatedly attempted in vain to contact her who was now under strict guard. He sent the ring to her by a messenger. She was charmed and took the ring quietly inside her room to treasure it in a box. Thereafter they could never meet, nor a messenger allowed entry in the building. Her Naani declared she would give up her life or Suraiya would be eliminated if she married Dev Anand. She wept and wept and finally yielded to the pressure the family mounted on her.
Later, as an act of desperate frustration, she took the ring sent by Dev to the seaside, and looking at it for the last time, with all the love she had in her heart for him, threw it far into the sea, to sing songs about her romance to the rising and falling tides.
Suraiya never married and died of cancer in January 2004 at the age of 74.
Dev Anand forgot her and married co-star Kalpana Kartik. Dev Anand died at the age of 88 in a heart attack on December 3, 2011 in London , where he was for medical treatment.
Bollywood’s evergreen superstar, Dev Anand, had romanced many beautiful women on the screen and even settled with one, but before death the octogenarian had, for the first time ever, professed his love for co-star Suraiya.
Dev Anand has admitted to have loved her and has made a special mention of this in his autobiography titled Romancing With Life.
“Yes. I loved Suraiya. It was a very important chapter of my life as I was growing. I was young and in love for the first time,”, he confesses.


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