Thaawarchand Gehlot, Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment presented the Awards to the winners of ‘Short Film Competition on Divyangjan Shashaktikaran-2017’ at a felicitation event organised by Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangja) under M/o Social Justice and Empowerment in collaboration with Directorate of Film Festivals here today. Smt. Latha Krishna Rao, Secretary, M/o Social Justice and Empowerment was also present on the occasion. The felicitation event was followed by full length screening of the award winning entries. The Minister congratulated all award winners and applauded the efforts of DEPwD for such creative award.The award for Best Short Film was given to Suyash Shinde for Azan, Abhay Punjabi for Achala, Amit Sonkar for Tum Main aur Hum Sab and B.D. Banshkar for I know Sign Language. Narendra Joshi’s Sugamaya Bharat and Jyotsna Puthran’s Zebra Crossing bagged the first position in the categories of Documentary and T.V. Spot, respectively.
Even in this life of modernity we tend to see a person’s disability before we see them for who they are. Till date it is a huge fight for Persons with Disability to exercise their rights to access, safety, acceptability, independence and quality of life. “Disability is not inability”. This is the cry of the ingenious creators of the short films, documentaries and TV Spots who had participated in the ‘Short Film Competition on Divyangjan Shashaktikaran” held by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities under Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.The Accesible India Campaign, which focuses on creating a barrier free environment in built spaces, transport systems and information and communication systems, was launched in 2015 by the Prime Minister. Lack of sensitivity and awareness in the society, was observed as the key challenge to the campaign. This formed the basis of DEPwD’s ‘Short film Competition on Divyangjan Shashaktikaran’, which saw overwhelming participation from all over the country. Entries in the categories of Short Films, Documentaries and T.V. Spots were invited to be developed in the line of vision and benefits of Accessible India Campaign as well as benefits of the skilling, funding and encouraging Persons with Disabilities.Eminent personalities from the film and media, Ms. Aparna Sanyal, Mr. Krishnendu Bose, Mr. Nila Madhab Panda and Mr. Balakishnan Diwaker, were part of the jury scrutinizing the entries to draw out the best, which most aptly described the themes and connected the most with the audience. Also Mr. K.V.S. Rao represented the department in the panel of judges.