Union Information & Broadcasting Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated a week-long ‘Independence Day Film Festival’ at Siri Fort auditorium here on Friday.

He urged people to believe in the ‘oneness of the country’ and emphasised that “nothing else should be allowed to cause obstacles in India’s march ahead.”

Naidu asserted the importance of cinema in bringing forth the lives of prominent as well as unsung heroes of the freedom struggle.

He mentioned movies like ‘Sardar’ and a Tamil movie ‘Veerapandiyan Kottabomman’ which depicted the lives of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and an 18th century warrior, Veerapandiyan Kottabomman as capable of inspiring in the people an interest in the history of freedom fighters.

The festival will screen 20 films till August 18, whose primary aim is to inspire a patriotic mood among the public.

Speaking at the event, Naidu said priority will be given to students of government schools to attend the festival.

The festival opened with the screening of the movie ‘Gandhi’ made by British Director Richard Attenborough.

Naidu, speaking at the event, warned people not to remember Independence Day as just any other day, but to feel grateful to freedom fighters who sacrificed their lives irrespective of their caste, creed and religion.

He also informed the media on the preparations made by the government on the occasion of the 70th Independence day.

He said that I&B Ministry has been roped in to play patriotic songs for the next three days on All India Radio (AIR) and also to air archived audio and video speeches of freedom fighters in short movies on Doordarshan (DD).

National institutes were requested to invite eminent people to speak on the freedom struggle, he added.

Schools have also been asked to take students to visit memorials of freedom fighters.

The Ministry of Textiles has pitched in with a ‘colours of India’ fabric panel, which will be mounted at places where a large number of people congregate. Also, all monuments in the Capital will be illuminated in the colours of the tri-colour.

Naidu said that all cabinet ministers were assigned to visit the birthplaces of freedom fighters across the nation.

They will visit the birthplaces of revolutionaries like Chandra Shekhar Azad, Khudiram Bose, Subhas Chandra Bose, Mahatma Gandhi, Madan Lal Dhingra, Gopinath Bordoloi, Rao Tula Ram, Rani Chennamma and Bal Gangadhar Tilak.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar will visit Port Blair Cellular Jail to pay homage to the freedom fighters who were imprisoned there.

 

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