Bhubaneswar: UNICEF Odisha in partnership with AAINA, an Odisha-based voluntary organization, gave away five awards as part of Kallola, a short film contest on child rights at the awards ceremony here on Saturday.
Internationally acclaimed film actor and director Aparna Sen, who graced the occasion as chief guest, presented the awards. Chairperson, Odisha State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (OSCPCR) Kasturi Mohapatra and Director, Odisha State Child Protection Society (OSCPS), D Prasanth Kumar Reddy, were the guests of honour while Actor & Rajya Sabha member Anubhav Mohanty was an esteemed guest. Chief, UNICEF Odisha, Yumi Bae and noted film and theatre personality Anant Mahapatra, who was chairman of the jury for Kallola, were present.
Bachpan by Sangram Keshari Sahu received the first prize. ‘Asha Gobara Ra by Biswanath Swain won the second prize and also the children’s choice award. Soch Badlo by Ramachandra Meher received the third prize. The jury’s choice award went to The Open Door by Suraj Pattnayak.
The theme for Kallola 2017 was ‘end violence against children…soch badlo!’ (change your attitude), which challenges stereotyped behavior and thoughts that are overlooked, ignored or perpetuate an act of violence against a child. Kallola 2017 focused on ending violence – physical, sexual, emotional and mental violence against children that often has a social and cultural sanction attached to them.
Five short films produced by fifteen adolescent children as part of Kallola Junior were screened at the event. The children were selected from a child care institution under the Integrated Child Protection Scheme (State Women and Child Development department).
Speaking on the occasion, Sen said: “Watching films at Kallola 2017 made me reminisce memories of my first experience of looking through the camera lens. Parents and people should not take children for granted but rather make their life joyous. The power of cinema should be used and more films should be made to spread the awareness to end violence against children.”
Mohanty said, “Even if parents are very busy these days they should spend quality and fruitful time with children. It’s the collective responsibility of all to raise voice against violence against children and spread awareness.”
Yumi Bae said, “I appreciate and congratulate all award winners and participants in the contest, including children who took an interest in this theme – ending violence against children. I am also grateful to our partners with whose support the thought provoking films will reach wider audiences and trigger a dialogue around ending violence against children.”
“We should take the pledge and raise voice against violence and support each other and spread awareness,” Kasturi Mohapatra said. D Prasanth Reddy supplemented: “All children have immense talent and help and support should be provided to them to realize their dreams. OSCPS will take the films and screen it across the state so that the messages reach more and more people.”
Secretary, AAINA, Sneha Mishra said, “It is a pleasure to hold the event for third year and also getting DWCD and OSCPCR as partners. We were overwhelmed to receive 44 entries this year. This shows the event getting popular. We sincerely hope these films storm people’s mind to change their perception on child rights.”
This year, an eminent jury comprising Anant Mahapatra, Anuradha Mohanty, Baikuntha Panigrahi, Chandrabhanu Pattnayak, Kapilash Bhuyan and S V Raman along with a special panel of 50 children as jury from Kendriya Vidyalaya and the districts evaluated the entries and selected the best five for the awards.
Kallola is an annual short film contest on child rights that aims to create an environment to promote the rights and empowerment of children in Odisha. Through the short advocacy films, it aims to reach widest possible audiences on issues that promote the rights of children in the state. The theme in the first year of the contest (2015) was ending violence against children. In 2016, the theme was discrimination against the girl child. In 2016, a non-competitive section was introduced to encourage adolescents to reflect, conceptualize and under the guidance of film experts, make short films on the same theme.