Mike Pandey urges centre, Goa to bury IFFI hatchet

July 19th, 2011 - 12:58 pm ICT by IANS  

Ambika Soni Panaji, July 19 (IANS) Renowned filmmaker Mike Pandey, who is chairman of the steering committee of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI), has said the squabbling between the central information ministry and the Goa government over sharing the costs could weaken the event.

In a letter to the Goa government dated July 14 accessed by IANS Tuesday, Pandey has also advised the Directorate of Film Festivals (DFF) that the current goings-on between the two agencies were disturbing.

“We need to get away from the syndrome of this is something ‘incurred by Goa state’ or ‘that belongs to the Centre’. Let us pool our strength, experience and hearts and work as one team,” said Pandey, who was appointed by union Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni to streamline the festival.

The DFF functions under the union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MoIB) and the Entertainment Society of Goa (ESG), a government society created to promote films in the state.

The ESG, chaired by Chief Minister Digambar Kamat, and the DFF, headed by a senior MoIB official, have for years been at loggerheads now over logistical and expense related issues of the IFFI, which is being held in Goa for many years now.

According to Pandey, who has been handpicked by Soni to suggest modifications to bring the IFFI on par with global standards, the spats were proving to be detrimental to the festival.

“Segregation and division would just weaken and water down our collaborative strength. I see indications that disturb me,” said Pandey.

The Goa government claims while it foots the bill of several crores (last IFFI cost Rs.14 crore) every year, it is not given much say in organising the high profile event.

Over the last few years, the lead up to IFFI has invariably been marked with bickering and bad blood between the central government and state government agencies.

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