Filmmaker Vidhu Vinod Chopra says his mother is the reason he decided to make Shikara: The Untold Story Of Kashmiri Pandits.
The director opened up about the reason behind making the film when he came to the national capital to host a screening of the film for some Kashmiri Pandit refugees from Jagti migrant camp in Jammu on the 30th anniversary of the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley.
"It took me 11 years to make the film. Many people ask me 'why this film' and 'why didn't I make another part of 'Munna Bhai M.B.B.S' or '3 Idiots'... It's not just a film for me. I made this for my mother (late Shanti Devi)," said Vidhu Vinod.
The director, who has tapped into memories of his childhood and the stories of his mother to create Shikara: The Untold Story Of Kashmiri Pandits, also showed a short documentary Shikara: Tribute To My Mother, capturing the emotions of his mother when she went back to Kashmir to her place after many years. After many years, she got a chance to revisit her place when Vidhu Vinod Chopra started to work on Mission Kashmir in 2000.
In the clip, she shares her dilemma of having to leave her own home, recounts the day when she received a call from her friend saying that the militants were looting and burning Hindu's house while she was in Mumbai for the premiere of one of his films.
"She is the reason I made the film," asserted Vidhu Vinod.
Shikara addresses the issue of ethnic cleansing and riots that took place in 1989 in Kashmir. The film chronicles the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from Kashmir on the night of January 19, 1990, through the story of Shiv Kumar Dhar (essayed by Aadil Khan) and Shanti Dhar (essayed by Sadia). It also shows the layers of blooming romance in the conflict-ridden state of Kashmir.
The 3 Idiots producer has directed, edited and produced Shikara in association with Fox Star Studios. It will open on February 7.
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