Bangalore International Centre had arranged the screening of the Malayalam film “Have you seen the Arana?” by SunandaBhat on Friday, 18th January, 2013 at 6:30 pm. She was present to interact with the audience after the screening. Ms. Tara Rao moderated the discussion.
The film is a lyrical journey through Wayanad, in South India. Part of the fragile ecosystem of the western mountain range, this region is witnessing rapid transformation in the name of ‘development’.A woman’s concern over the disappearance of medicinal plants from the forest, a farmer’s commitment to growing traditional varieties of rice organically and a cash crop cultivator’s struggle to survive amidst farmers’ suicides, offer fresh insights into shifting relations between people, knowledge systems and environment. Interwoven into contemporary narratives is an ancient tribal creation myth that traces the passage of their ancestors across this land, recalling past ways of reading and mapping the terrain. As hills flatten, forests disappear and traditional knowledge systems are forgotten, the film reminds us that this diversity could disappear forever, to be replaced by monotonous and unsustainable alternatives.
The discussion after the film was very interesting.