The National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA) is bringing the first-ever Urban Climate Film Festival to New Town, Kolkata on 3rd to 5th June 2023. Launched in New Delhi in March 2023, the film festival is being organised through the CITIIS program under the engagement events of U20 (the urban track of G20). The festival is supported by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, the French Development Agency (AFD), the European Unionand the New Town Kolkata Green Smart City Corporation Limited.
The objectives of the festival are to:
– Employ the powerful medium of film to enlighten audiences about the environmental, social and economic impacts of climate change on urban settlements
– Spark conversations about building climate-resilient cities and invite inputs from the public
– Encourage citizens to undertake ‘environmentally responsible behaviours’ in line with the U20 priority areas and the Hon. Prime Minister’s clarion call through the LiFE Mission
The global call for entries for the festival had receivedan overwhelming response with 150 films submitted from 20 countries. These were evaluated by a jury that comprised:
Dr Surbhi Dahiya (Professor, Indian Institute of Mass Communication)
Dr PranabPatar (Chief Executive, Global Foundation for Advancement ofEnvironment)
Mr Sabyesachi Bharti (Deputy Director, CMS Vatavaran)
The Urban Climate Film Festival was launched on 24th March at Alliance Française in New Delhi. The inaugural session was chaired by G20 Sherpa Mr Amitabh Kant. After a successful run in Delhi, the festival travelled to Mumbai, where it was hosted at Alliance Française de Bombay.The festival in Delhi and Mumbai showcased a curated selection of films by adiverse pool of filmmakers from countries like India, France, Iran, and the USA. The screenings were complemented by panel discussions and special sessions where audiences interacted with filmmakers.
The Urban Climate Film Festival in Kolkata
The Urban Climate Film Festival in Kolkata will be held at Nazrul Tirtha in New Town Kolkata on 3rd, 4th and 5th June 2023.
16 films from 12 countries will be screened, along with Q&A sessions with filmmakers.
The festival will also celebrate World Environment Day on 5th June with a special closing ceremony, which will be graced by MrDidier Talpain, Consul General of France in Kolkata; Mr Debashis Sen, Managing Director, West Bengal Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation; Mr Hitesh Vaidya, Director, National Institute of Urban Affairs; Mrs Meghna Pal, CEO, NKGSCCL; and Mr Naim Keruwala, Program Director, CITIIS.
Didier Talpain, Consul General of France in Kolkata said “Climate change is THE great challenge ahead of us. I happened to work for the organization of the Paris COP21-2015 which was a milestone in the awareness of general public regarding this question. More recently and thanks to very engaged Indian climate activists, I discover the polymorphic problematic of Sunderbans area, here in West Bengal. That is why I consider that we must pay a tribute and encourage all initiatives which can bring and explain to a wider audience what climate change really means. The Urban Climate Film Festival is without doubt one of them.”
Nicolas Facino Director, Alliance Française du Bengale said, “Alliance Française du Bengale is proud to be a partner of the Urban Climate Film Festival, organised by CITIIS in partnership with AgenceFrançaise de Développement. We are in critical times and the effects of global warming are already visible to each of us. And climate-resilient urban planning is more essential than ever before. It is time that we start creating awareness through the exchange of dialogues and through our responsible actions to mitigate one of the greatest challenges of our generation.”
Debashis Sen, IAS Chairman, New Town Kolkata Development Authority, New Town Kolkata Green Smart City Corporation, NabaDiganta Industrial Township Development Authority; Managing Director, West Bengal Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation said, “Yuval Noah Harari, in his book ‘21 Lessons for the 21st Century’, has commented that one of the greatest global threats is climate change and global warming. This will affect all countries, small and big. It is, therefore, necessary for all of us from the Government’s side, from the corporates’ side, individual-wise, community-wise, to come together and evolve innovative ways to combat this reality. The Urban Climate Film Festival is a great effort in bringing diverse thinkers and documentaries together. I, along with many others, look forward to participating and seeing the films to understand what is to be done.”