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Rainbow Returns

The second edition of India’s biggest LGBT (Lesbian,Gay,Bisexual and Transgender) event,Kashish 2011 — Mumbai International Queer Film Festival,opened on Wednesday evening

Written by Zaira Arslan | Mumbai | Published: May 28, 2011 2:17:41 am

Kashish,India’s most prominent LGBT film festival,is back for its second year

The second edition of India’s biggest LGBT (Lesbian,Gay,Bisexual and Transgender) event,Kashish 2011 — Mumbai

International Queer Film Festival,opened on Wednesday evening. Launched last year as India’s first ever mainstream LGBT film festival,Kashish 2010 screened 109 queer films from around the world over four days. This time around,the organisers have upped the numbers with 123 films,that will be screened till May 29. Speaking at the inauguration,festival director Sridhar Rangayan said,“We have a huge collection of films from around the world and some stimulating panel discussions in store for the audiences.”

Support for the city’s queer community has been steadily increasing,and Kashish has gone the extra mile in

supporting and promoting queer films and their filmmakers,using,as Rangayan puts it,“cinema as a means to understand what being queer means today”. Aside from screening films,Kashish has also organised discussions,interactions with filmmakers and a number of other cultural activities,all aimed at increasing awareness about a community that has,for far too long,been in the shadow.

Present at the opening of Kashish 2011 and lending their support were Sai Paranjype and Pooja Bhatt,who inaugurated the festival,Alyque Padamsee,Dolly Thakore,Mona Ambegaonkar,Suhasini Mulay,Kim Sharma,Mahesh Dattani,and Manavendra Singh Gohil,the country’s first openly gay royal,among others. Voicing her support,Sai Paranjpye said,“Kashish has really taken root and can today loudly and proudly proclaim that it will be an annual event that will be part of the cultural life of Mumbai.” Following the ceremony was the screening of Undertow,an internationally acclaimed Peruvian film about a married fisherman who is having an affair with another man.

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