Sikkim: film by Satyajit Ray | Sikkim not controversial: Gautam

The DVD of the documentary created to portray its namesake, produced by the Royal family of a sovereign Sikkim in 1971 and banned by the Indian Government till 2010, was finally launched by Angel Digital in Kolkata on Thursday.

While occupying the podium during the event Ghosh said, “The documentary was about the sovereign state of Sikkim before India annexed it, so perhaps there were political reasons but I still cannot justify the banning of this film as it contains no infuriating or controversial footage.”

“People had a great curiosity about this film as it was made by the legendary director Satyajit Ray and it is great that they will finally get to see it,” he remarked.

Fellow filmmaker and Satyajit Ray’s son Sandip Ray shared a few anecdotes from his experiences during a shooting trip to Sikkim with his father while affirming to the notion that “Sikkim portrays only the flora and fauna of the land. It only shows the beautiful landscape and I assure you that there are no controversial footages.”

Ray revealed that obtaining a decent print had been a hassle as the owner of the original negative Hope Cooke, the wife of the then Chogyal (King) of Sikkim, could not be contacted.

“It is really lucky that a print of this film was found with one of my father’s old friend and distributor in London because the original negative is no longer available,” Ray remarked.

“Some parts of the movie have been restored and though the original quality of colour was really great, this print is viewable and at least people will get the opportunity to see this,” he said.

Ray urged the distributors to produce compilations of his father’s other short films as this is the high time for their release.

“It would be great if the short films of my father are released because I believe the people are ready to see them now and so I request the producers to do something about it,” Ray said.

(Reporting by Arnab Chakraborty) 
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