New Delhi: IPROCH (Institute for Promotion and Research on Odisha’s Cultural Heritage), a Delhi-based civil society and think tank dedicated to Odisha’s culture and heritage, successfully hosted the Odia Cinefest 2024, a two-day Odia Film Festival on January 13-14, 2024, at Sirifort Auditorium, Delhi. The festival featured four critically acclaimed films, including two national award-winning movies, “Matira Manisha” and “Adim Vichar,” along with two recent successful releases, “Daman” and “My Sweet Housewife.”
The festival paid tribute to the legendary director Mrinal Sen on his 100th birth anniversary by showcasing his award-winning classic, “Matira Manisha.” Another highlight was “Adim Vichar,” directed by Sabyasachi Mohapatra, which presented a compelling narrative of the ancient justice system within the Kondh tribe of Odisha. The immensely successful film “Daman” portrayed the heroic efforts of a young doctor combating malaria in Malkangiri district, while “My Sweet Housewife” delicately explored the complexities within a middle-class Odia couple’s relationship.
Despite the chilling cold evening in Delhi, the Sirifort Auditorium witnessed a packed audience, including a significant number of non-Odia attendees. The opening ceremony featured eminent Odissi Danseuse Guru Sharon Lowen as a guest, while the closing ceremony was presided over by former Chief Justice of India Shri Deepak Mishra and Director of National School of Drama Sh. Chittaranjan Tripathy. Renowned figures from the film, television, theatre, and art industries, such as Sabyasachi Mohapatra, Jitendra Mishra, Surya Deo, Pritiraj Satapathy, Naina Dash, Jagannath Panda, and others, graced the festival.
Each film screening was complemented by a panel discussion featuring the producer, director, and actors, moderated by Charudutta Panigrahi. IPROCH also announced a short film contest during the festival, encouraging young filmmakers to create meaningful films. Sh. Biswajit Das, the organization’s secretary, expressed the importance of such contests in fostering enthusiasm among the youth for filmmaking.
This marked the second Odia film festival organized by IPROCH in Delhi, following the first festival in 2011, celebrating the 75th year of Odia cinema. IPROCH President Shri Satyagopal Rajguru and Secretary Sh. Biswajit Das shared with the media the organization’s conscious efforts to showcase Odisha’s soft power in arts, culture, music, heritage, films, and theatre in the national capital and beyond. IPROCH is actively involved in research and has published books considered collector’s choices. Looking ahead, Mr. Rajguru revealed that IPROCH plans to conduct research on the cultural links of ancient Kalinga with Bali and other South East Asian countries.
Cine critics from Odisha and Delhi praised IPROCH’s efforts, acknowledging the festival’s role as a true booster for the regional film ecosystem. The audience, being grateful for the meticulous selection of movies, attributed the festival’s success to the Chairman of IPROCH’s Film Committee Mr. Nabajyoti Das.