Panaji, October 11: The Entertainment Society of Goa, co-organiser of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI), on Friday, shrugged off criticism over the non-inclusion of Konkani films in the programming schedule of the country's biggest government-backed film festival, saying the jury has the final say in selection of films for the event. Karan Johar, Subhash Ghai and Siddharth Roy Kapur to Lead 50th IFFI Steering Committee Panel.
Amid accusations from the Opposition, who have alleged that IFFI organisers have meted out step-motherly treatment to Goan filmmakers, Subhash Phaldesai, vice-chairperson of the Society, which co-organises the event along with the Central Government's Directorate of Film Festivals, also said that the Opposition was trying to create confusion vis-a-vis the issue.
"The DFF appoints a jury panel to choose films on their merit. We as ESG or DFF do not have any role in the selection of films to be screened in Indian Panorama," Phaldesai said.
The Indian Panorama is a curated competitive section in the film festival, which screens Indian films. The Congress as well as the Goa Forward Party have been accusing the state government of not lobbying hard enough with IFFI organisers to screen films made in the local language, Konkani, in the festival.
Leader of OppositIon Digambar Kamat has also urged the state government to create a curated section especially for cinema made in Goa, which has been hosting the festival since 2004.
Phaldesai however said, that the opposition was only trying to create confusion in the minds of people over the issue of non-inclusion of Konkani films in the festival.
"They are only trying to create confusion. We cannot influence the jury," Phaldesai said. The festival gets underway in Goa next month.