Film on displaced tribe of Tripura released

September 7th, 2008 - 7:37 pm ICT by ANI  

By Pinaki Das
Agartala, Sep 7 (ANI): ””Yarwng””, a 95-minute feature film highlighting the problems faced by the Kokborok tribe of Tripura following displacement due to construction of Dumbur hydel-power project, was release recently by the State Forest Minister Jitendra Choudhury.
The plight of the Kokborok tribes, dislocated from their ancestral home for last three decades owing to the construction of the Dumbur hydel project in south Tripura, has been poignantly depicted in the feature film “Yarwng” (Root), of the indigenous dialect.
The story has been set in the backdrop of the Gumati hydel project. The trauma of displacement and its aftermath causing human tragedy unfolds in characters lives in the film.
Forest Minister Jitendra Choudhury, who released the film in the presence of Culture Minister Anil Sarkar, hoped the movie would attract attention and gain appreciation from both national and international film critics for its subject matter and presentation.
””Yarwng”” features the story of the tender romance between Karmati and Wakhirai (a tribal couple). Just when the romance promises to flower, the hydel power project sweeps away the lovebirds dream and leads to socio-economic unrest.
””The film is about how the hydel project affected the future of villagers of that particular area, besides causing setback to Karmati and Wakhirai. It highlights that development is necessary but it should not cause pathos, ”” said Father K. J. Joseph, the film producer.
Yarwng also narrates the predicament of Chokdri, the village head, Ochai, the Village priest and Agurai, the shopkeeper.
The film throws light upon how the Chokdri, who was not used to taking orders, had to give in to the orders from authorities and vacate his home, at a time when he was preparing for his daughter’’s upcoming marriage.
Similarly, Ochai, who is the village priest, after placating the Gods and fulfilling his obligations, had to walk away from home with his ailing wife while the Agurai’’s shop, which earlier used to be the hub of lively discussions, gradually becomes silent and empty.
””On the eve of Karmati and Wakhirai’’s marriage, the newly-built dam submerges the entire village and separates the lovers forever,”” Father Joseph said, elaborating the story of the film.
About 80,000 tribals were displaced in 1976 when the Dumbur hydel project was commissioned and a 30-metre high gravity dam was constructed across river Gomti, about 3.5 km upstream of South Tripura, which submerged a valley area of 46.34 sq km for generating 8.60 MW power from an installed capacity of 10 MW.
About 60 per cent of the displaced tribes failed to be rehabilitated by the government and most of them were compelled to settle in the hill ranges and continue their struggle for survival through Jhum cultivation.
The lead female actor, Meena Debbarma, is an awarded actress in the Indian Panorama of international film festival of India for her performance in ””Mathia”” in 2005. (ANI)

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