Ranjan Palit & Vasudha Joshi/1988/India/40 mins/English and Oriya with English subtitles
Voices from Baliapal is a film that explores the non-violent resistance by 70,000 fishermen and farmers to attempts to displace them for a missile testing range. Self-financed and shot in about five days, the film is an almost lyrical protest against the previous government’s attempts to grab farmland in Orissa for a missile testing range. The 40-minute film begins with a chant by fishermen to Shiva: “Lord, why don’t you listen to us? Sitting in your temple you think you’re so strong. You have turned to stone.”
Voices from Baliapal won the National Award for the Best Film on Social Issues, 1989 and the Golden Conch, 1990
Vasudha was a TV journalist and has been making documentaries since 1988 which include Voices from Baliapal (National Award for the Best Film on Social Issues, 1989 and Golden Conch, 1990), Follow the Rainbow (Valais Award, Geneva 1992), Mahila Samakhya UP (Silver Conch, 1996), For Maya (Anandalok Editor’s Choice Award, 1998), and Girl Song (Honourable Mention, IAWRT Awards, 2005), among others.
Ranjan is an eminent cinematographer who has also directed and co-directed several documentary films and worked for the BBC and UNICEF. He has shot more than a hundred documentaries on a range of issues. Anand Patwardhan’s Bombay our City, Reena Mohan’s Kamlabai and Sanjay Kak’s Jashn-e-Azadi are just to name a few. He has also made or co-directed close to a dozen films. His film Voices from Baliapal won the National Award (1989), the Golden Conch (1990) and the City of Freiburg Award (1991). The Magic Mystic Marketplace, won the Golden Conch (1996) and the UNESCO Prize (1997).