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Lyari Notes

Lyari Notes (2015): Al Jazeera International, YLE, IDFA-Bertha Fund, Alter Cine Foundation

A coming of age film in Karachi’s most volatile district about four young girls who attend rockstar Hamza Jafri’s music school amidst cycles of violence. World Premiere at IDFA where it was nominated for the AWFEJ Award and at Sheffield where it was nominated for the Youth Jury Award, opening film at the Kochi Biennale and Winner of the IDPA Long form Documentary Award (Silver)

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Light Burns

A light burns , Winner of UK Environment Film Fellowship 2007

A film that focuses on the experiment to bring electricity to a remote village in Jharkhand using bio diesel. It follows the ups and downs of a community determined to improve their lives. Armed with the knowledge of how to manufacture bio diesel from locally grown oil seeds and barely any other resources…they set out on their quest.

Rat Race

THE RAT RACE - Winner of the MIPDOC coproduction challenge, Cannes

A legion of hired killers stalks the streets of Mumbai. The victim senses danger and dives into a gutter. The glare of a searchlight strikes him. He freezes. THWACK!! Ganesh picks up his victim and throws him amongst a heap of dead bodies. He has killed twenty this night, another ten to go before sunrise. Ganesh is one of 50 men hired by Mumbai’s Municipal Corporation to kill rats. They take to the streets armed with their weapons of mouse destruction – a torch and stick. They are led by Behram Harda the legendary Pied Piper of Mumbai who has killed 2.8 million rats in 37 years. He motivates his team to wage a relentless battle every night against an army of rodents that threaten to overrun India’s commercial capital.

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Robot Jockey

Robot Jockey , National Geographic Channel

Witness the thousand year old tradition of camel racing entering the realm of science fiction...when Qatar decides to silence international criticism by banning the use of child jockeys and introducing robots instead. A film about the race to create a robot to take over the camel races…a challenge that begins with coaxing cantankerous camels to accept a metallic rider and culminating with camel owners struggling to embrace the new technology. Can robots win the hearts and imagination of the camel crazy public? Will the wealthy sheikhs be tempted to look beyond tradition and spearhead cutting edge robotic science? Follow the gripping account of the races that will determine whether technology can truly break into the traditional bastion of Bedouin camel racing. A film that combines adrenaline and science to bring alive a spectacular sport pushing the realms of popular science.

Mee Koli

Mee Koli , Doordarshan

Paints a vivid picture of Mumbai’s original inhabitants the koli fisherfolk and their fight to continue a traditional livelihood in India’s commercial capital. The narrative unfolds in the very year that the tsunami tidal wave devastated the lives and livelihood of fishermen across the coast of South East Asia including India. The documentary premiered at `Water Journeys’, an international film festival on water related issues held at the Alliance Francaise, Bangalore. It was also included in the 2005 Vatavaran (Environment Film Festival) Panorama.

Rewriting the rules

REWRITING THE RULES (SHORT FILM) - made under the Commonwelath Film Fellowship 2008

Every year in India the birthday of the Hindu God, Lord Krishna is celebrated with great fanfare. An earthen pot filled with milk/ butter is hung at a great height. Groups of boys then reenact the role of little Krishna or Govinda and his childish greed for butter. They form human pyramids by climbing on each other’s shoulders and attempt to break the earthen pot. Slipping, sliding…even a few broken bones are part of this macho sport. The group that breaks the pot will be rewarded. In a housing society in Dharavi, Asia’s biggest slum, a group of govindas tries to break the pot but things are going a little differently…Finalist for the Webtalkies Festival, Nautanki TV

Plop

PLOP! (SHORT FILM) – winner of the best screenplay for the 48hr film project 2009

A drugged tourist, two corrupt cops and many plops...

Circles in the sand

Circles in the Sand , Screened at OpenFrame 2003

A poignant account of the acrobatic ferris wheel operators on Mumbai’s Juhu beach and their underground theatre movement that comes alive every night as the rest of the city slumbers. The film was chosen for the UNESCO-PSBT international panorama 2003.