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Indian documentary on rape bags 3 awards at New York Festivals International Television & Film Awards

MUMBAI: An Indian documentary on rape titled ‘Silent Screams – India’s Fight Against Rape’ has bagged three awards at the 2014 New York Festivals International Television and Film Awards.

‘Silent Screams – India’s Fight Against Rape’ is directed by Pria Somiah, written by Manira A Pinto and produced by Miditech for NewsAsia, Singapore. It bagged Gold World Medal for Best Investigative Report, Bronze World Medal for Current Affairs and Bronze World Medal for Human Concerns at the fest.

The film is based on the brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old student in the heart of India’s capital city New Delhi that shook the conscience of the country. The incident catalyzed a national movement against rape and the demand for stronger laws and speedier enforcement, starting with police sensitization.

The film follows journalist Namita Bhandare as she meets rape survivors, law-makers and enforcers, activists and lawyers to understand the politics of rape and the plight of victims in their fight for justice.

Director Somiah said, “The survivors we met in the making of the film were not weak or frightened women. They were brave, strong-willed and determined women and girls who wanted justice. They wanted their families and the community to shift the shame to the perpetrator. They wanted the conversation to change over who is to blame for rape. We wanted the film to document what has come to become an important milestone in the women’s movement not just in India but the world over.”

The film has already won the Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union – Perspective Award 2013 in Hanoi. It has been screened at the Mumbai Women’s International Film Festival 2013, Mountain Echo’s Festival in Bhutan and distributed across colleges, NGOs and Legal Aid Organisations, both nationally and internationally.

In its 57th year, the awards honour programming in all lengths and forms from over 50 countries. Dedicated to the television and film industries, it has categories in Animation, Comedy, Corporate, Drama, Documentary, Feature Films, Music Videos, News, Promos, Reality Shows, Sports, Telenovelas, Webisodes, Best Performance by an Actor/Actress, Special Event, Innovation, Technical Production Team, CSR, Best Screenplay and Best Host.

The competition is judged by award-winning directors, producers, writers, actors and other creative media professionals from across the globe.

This year, the jury chose winners amid competition from 700 entries.