Half-hour Sunday slot on Doordarshan for short films

November 26th, 2011 - 6:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Ambika Soni Panaji, Nov 26 (IANS) Indian documentary film makers Saturday welcomed the information and broadcasting ministry’s decision to reserve a half-hour prime time slot every Sunday for short films on the national television channel Doordarshan.

Speaking to reporters in Panaji, president of the Indian Documentary Producers’ Association (IDPA) Mike Pandey said the half-hour slot was only the beginning and a fully dedicated documentary and short film channel was on the cards.

“Thanks to the support of (union) Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni, we now have a dedicated slot for short films and documentaries…Finally, we have a slot where documentaries will be screened when people are watching TV on prime time and not when they are sleeping,” said Pandey, a wildlife filmmaker.

Pandey, who was speaking to reporters at the 42nd International Film Festival of India (IFFI) here, said talks were also on to start India’s first channel fully dedicated to short films and documentaries.

“This is the next step. We may ride piggyback on the Doordarshan because it already has an existing set-up. We could have this channel functioning from Mumbai or Delhi,” said the president of the IDPA.

Pandey said that private television news channels should be persuaded to telecast short films and documentaries. “There is corporate social responsibility and there is social responsibility. If a channel is making money from the people of India, then it is its duty to give something back to them,” Pandey said.

Pandey said a small but powerful lobby of film producers was stalling the Supreme Court directions to screen public interest documentaries in cinema halls.

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