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Jimmy Shergill, Kulraj Randhawa and Gurpreet Ghuggi's Visit

Punjabi Film festival to be organized at Punjabi University

“Punjabi University will start Punjabi Film Festival as its annual feature from the current year on the lines of Aligarh Muslim University, which conducts Urdu Film Festivals on regular basis. It will also properly document Punjabi folk art forms in textual and audio-visual formats and patronize any kind of effort with the objective of promoting the rich Punjabi cultural heritage.”

This was announced by Dr Jaspal Singh, Vice-Chancellor of the University while presiding over a symposium on “New Trends in Punjabi Cinema”, organised by the University’s Department of Youth Welfare at Kala Bhawan here today. Top film star of Hindi films, who shot into prominence with such blockbusters as Machis, Munna Bhai MBBS, and Lage Raho Munna Bhai, Jimmy Shergill participated in the discussion. He was accompanied by the heroine of famous TV soap, Kareena Kareena and Punjabi Feature films, Mannat and Tera Mera Ki Rishta, Kulraj Randhawa, comedy king, Gurpreet Ghugi, character actor, Binnu Dhillon and director of the film Tera Mera Ki Rishta, Navnit Gugnu. While advocating the adoption of an aggressive and proactive approach for the furtherance of Punjabi language and culture, the Vice-Chancellor declared to initiate a project by the University to trace the history of Punjabi Cinema and explore the possibilities for making high quality Punjabi films.

Jimmy Shergill regretted the fact that Punjabi film makers have to compromise on many fronts due to paucity of financers and producers who hesitate to extend financial help for making good quality films. “It was deplorable that Punjabi NRIs can spend exorbitantly to purchase liquor vends but draw cold feet when it comes to finance Punjabi films,” he said. While promising to make at least one Punjabi film every year, Shergill condemned the practice of making pirated copies of films which further lead to running down of the Punjabi films. Kulraj rejected the prevailing impression as a myth that girls, who aspire to join film industry, are exploited against their wishes. She urged for making collective efforts to promote Punjabi cinema. Binnu Dhillon said that Punjabis themselves were responsible for the downfall of Punjabi films.

In his emotional outburst against those who care a fig for the promotion of Punjabi cinema, Gurpreet Ghugi said that we have a long way to go till we reach the level and standard of Hindi feature films. He rated films as the best medium to promote a culture. He called upon the Sikh authorities to lift ban on showing some Sikh heroes in films as these were acting as ‘roadblocks’ in making historical films. While tracing the history of Punjabi cinema, Director Youth Welfare, Dr Satish Kumar Verma said that the past decade had launched a sort of renaissance and set new trends in the Punjabi film industry. He said that Punjabi was one of the richest languages of the world, occupying 12th place in 6,000 languages spoken all over the world. No other than Punjabis can salvage the prestige that was getting lost as Punjabis themselves feel ashamed of talking about their culture.


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