'Do not want to convey any message through The Kashmir Files'
Bollywood filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri, known for making successful projects like 'Buddha in a Traffic Jam' and 'The Tashkent Files', said his upcoming directorial 'The Kashmir Files' will make the audience understand and feel the trauma of the Kashmiri Pandits who went through a terrifying ordeal in the dreaded days of 1990s.
The film stars Pallavi Joshi, Darshan Kumar, Anupam Kher, Mithun Chakraborty and others in substantial roles.
In an exclusive conversation with 'Millennium Post', the director talks in detail about making a film to showcase the atrocities meted upon the Kashmiri Pandits.
For the filmmaker, the experiences he had while making the film proved to be an eye-opener "The biggest thing was that the history and truth of the Kashmiri Pandits - traumatised by the nightmares of 1990 - has been hidden from us for the last 32 years. So yes, every experience was truly eye-opening. Through this film, I did not plan to convey any special message. All I wanted to do was make people see for themselves the kind of injustice done with Kashmiri pandits; genocide that took place in Kashmir and how our justice system and the judiciary failed the victims," he states.
Given that the history of Kashmiri Pandits is a much sensitive topic in India, the journey of making a film like 'The Kashmir Files' was full of obstacles, says Vivek
"More than challenges, there were problems like the issue of Fatwa. Then there was the PIL case which got recently dismissed by the Bombay High Court. Besides, pressure groups and other things happen side by side and everything added to the challenges we were already facing," he revealed.
Talking about the research done by him and wife Pallavi Joshi, who has also produced the film, Vivek shared: "We travelled all over the world and did video testimonial recordings of the first generation Kashmiri Pandits. With such in-depth research, it took me four years to make this film. So, this is the most extensive research ever taken in the history of India on this issue."
Usually, filmmakers get inspired to make movies that render the audience speechless. But that was not the case with Vivek Agnihotri when he decided to make a film on the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits. Speaking on the same, he said, "Why should anything inspire me? There is a story of a genocide that took place years ago,
so I was not inspired by anything. Above all, it is the pain, the disappointment and the grief of the Kashmiri Pandits, which I wanted to bring on the screen."
"My focus is basically to make films on untold stories, the stories that people are scared to tell. So, I choose those stories that I want to tell everyone, the ones that are hidden from us for years. Also, I'm planning to make more films like 'The Tashkent Files' and The Kashmir Files'," he said in the end about his aim of making movies on untold truths hidden from people.