Glorifying the Century-Old Journey of India's Cinematic Brilliance
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With over a hundred years of glorious history waiting to be told, Indian cinema’s journey deserves to be preserved. Be it India’s first silent film Raja Harishchandra by Dadasaheb Phalke from 1913 or the internationally acclaimed South Indian drama Baahubali, Indian cinema has established a distinctive identity for itself in the world of fiction.
Testifying the incomparable importance of films, PM Narendra Modi inaugurated the National Museum of Indian Cinema on January 19 in Mumbai in presence of hundreds of shining stars from the Indian film fraternity. Many bigwigs of Bollywood including Jeetendra, Karan Johar, Asha Bhosle, Aamir Khan, AR Rahman and Subhash Ghai attended the event and exchanged pleasantries with the Prime Minister.
Celebrating Indian Cinema
The National Museum of Indian Cinema spans 100 magnificent years of Indian cinema. It is built by NBCC (India) Limited in an elegant 19th-century heritage bungalow called Gulshan Mahal, a Victorian bungalow built in the neo-Gothic style. It once drew luminaries to its musical soirées and cultural gatherings and is now equipped with modern amenities and facilities.
The elegant museum is equipped with cameras, recording machines, projectors and posters of old movies. It also houses artefacts of Bollywood and biographies of stars. With its state-of-the-art appeal, NMIC is expected to delight movie buffs and researchers. Designed by National Council of Science Museums, the project was conceived over 2 decades ago in 1997.
Due to controversies & legal battles, the project construction was delayed. The continuous push by the film fraternity, films division under the ministry of information and technology was able to bring India’s rich cinematic legacy to the public. Needless to say, NMIC is a positive step forward to preserve the unparalleled history of Indian cinema.
During his speech, PM Modi surprised the Who's Who of Indian cinema by asking, "How's the Josh?” receiving an enthusiastic "High Sir" in return. He also used the platform to announce the amendment in the cinematography act, 1952 to make piracy a stricter offence along with the pan-country single window system for film permissions.
"The film industry of this country has a huge potential to bring out social changes and has a very important role to play in the establishment of a 'New India. I know that piracy is a very big problem faced by the industry. We are working towards adding stricter punishment for piracy," he said, adding that the issue of getting filming permissions was recently brought to his notice.
Aiming to provide ease to filmmakers, the government has removed 1400-odd laws that were irrelevant under the ease of doing business policy. PM Modi requested the ones present in the audience to flag laws that were prevalent but made no sense in regards to the evolved times.
To further promote Indian cinema, the government might also consider organizing a global film and entertainment summit in the country. “The summit should be grand and global on the lines of Davos, I do not believe in doing anything small," said PM Modi.