PANAJI: Legendary film maker late Bimal Roy known for iconic films like Do Bheega Zamee, Devdas, Bandini, Sujata dealing with social issues spanning from farmers’ exploitation to caste divide and women empowerment, was a visionary and his films even today are used as reference points, said Dr Rinki Roy Bhattacharya, daughter of Bimal Roy on Saturday.
“My father was a visionary. Even today his films are cited when it comes to social issues. Last year ‘Do Bheega Zameen’ became a reference point when the question of farmers’ suicide came up. My father was aware of social realities. However his films were not preachy, but touched the hearts of his audience,” Dr Rinki said.
She was speaking on the sidelines of two-day Bimal Roy Film Festival, which was inaugurated at Entertainment Society of Goa (ESG) auditorium on Saturday. The festival has been jointly organised by ESG and Ganga Zuari Academy, a non-profit cultural organisation, aiming to encourage social harmony through inclusive cultural growth. ESG vice-chairman Subhash Phadessai was the chief guest while Dr Rinky wasther guest honour for the inauguration.
“My father was very conscious of the middle class values of our society. ‘Parineeta’ is a good example of this. He was inspired by stories of legendary novelist Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay. Till today, baba’s ‘Devdas’ remain a landmark. People refer to it much more than any other version although it has been made 15 times in various Indian languages,” she said.
According to Dr Rinki, her father’s mental wavelength matched with that of Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay.
“Both stood up against middle class exploitation. ‘Devdas’ portrayed the divide within Brahminism. My father was never a flag hoisting activist, even though he took up social issues. But he believed social transformation. My father was the first person who was approached by the then Prime Minister Late Jawaharlal Nehru to get the Bombay (now Mumbai) film industry rid of black money, which was rampant even at that time and disturbed PM Nehru,” she said.
Bimal Roy not only believed in social change, he also worked towards it. For his last film Sahara (which was not completed), the ace director signed his artistes and musicians who accepted payment through cheques.
“My father was a fantastic story teller and picked up stories close to his heart and infused it with emotions, like ‘Sujata’. Bimal Roy will live on as long as humanism lives,” she signed off.
Bimal Roy films to be screened on Sunday
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