Films can be great road safety messengers: CM Naveen Patnaik

The first edition of the film festival was appreciated by the Supreme Court committee on road safety and adjudged one of the best practices for creating awareness.
Usha Padhee, Arun Bothra and Tukuni Sahu felicitating the awardees | Express
Usha Padhee, Arun Bothra and Tukuni Sahu felicitating the awardees | Express

BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday said every life is precious and road safety is a high priority area of the state government. Attending the finale of the National Road Safety Short Film Festival-2023 through virtual mode, Naveen said short films are an effective tool of communication for spreading the message on road safety.

The first edition of the film festival was appreciated by the Supreme Court committee on road safety and adjudged one of the best practices for creating awareness. “I hope, these films will be screened throughout the state to create awareness on road safety. Together, we can build a safer Odisha. My heartfelt gratitude to all the citizens for making it a people’s movement,” he said.

Organised by the Commerce and Transport department, this was the second edition of the short film festival with its finale held at KIIT University here on Tuesday. The festival received 247 short film entries in seven languages from eight states.

The CM expressed his pleasure over the participation of students from Nepal, Bangladesh and Kenya, who are studying in Bhubaneswar, in the short film festival. Apart from Odia language, the festival received entries in Santali and Sambalpuri languages.

He congratulated all the winners of the festival for spreading awareness on road safety through their films. The festival also received entries from Punjab, Maharashtra, Kerala, Assam, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal.

‘Biswasta Sathi’, a film based on the bond between a dog and its owner and directed by Amrutanshu Mohapatra from Balasore, won the best film in the Odia category. ‘IF’ directed by Sreenath S from Kerala received the best film award in non-Odia category. Both the films highlighted the importance of wearing helmets and they were felicitated by Naveen.

The best film in both Odia and non-Odia categories received a cash award of Rs 1 lakh each, while first runner-up was awarded Rs 80,000 and second runner-up received Rs 60,000. Best director, music, cinematography and actor/actress were awarded Rs 25,000 each in both the categories.

Filmmakers, amateur film enthusiasts and students had submitted their entries in documentary, experimental, narrative, fiction, non-fiction and animation formats. The entries included eight animation and seven silent films. The winners were selected by a judging panel of film industry/non-industry professionals and luminaries from different walks of life.

During the closing ceremony, all the jury members of the festival were felicitated. Transport Minister Tukuni Sahu, department principal secretary Usha Padhee, Crime Branch ADG Arun Bothra and transport commissioner Amitabh Thakur were present.

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