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News Malayalam

Lack of funds cast uncertainty shadow over 23rd IFFK

The Kerala State Chalachitra Academy has been advised to forgo the opening ceremony, increase delegate fee, reduce cash prizes and to bring in fewer foreign invitees, in order to cut costs.


The fate of the 23rd edition of the International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) is uncertain due to paucity of funds as the state is going through a rebuilding process after being hit by the worst ever floods last month.

IFFK is held in December every year.

Earlier this month, chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan gave a directive that on account of the huge requirement of funds for rebuilding the state, all extravagant programmes including the IFFK and the State Youth Festival be called off this the year.

But succumbing to pressure from several quarters, it was decided to go ahead with the Youth Festival on a shoestring budget without any extravagance. Then came a request that the IFFK should be held too.

Soon after his return from the US, Vijayan gave the nod for the IFFK, but on the condition that the organisers should utilise their own funds.

State minister for films AK Balan told the media on Tuesday that for last year's IFFK, the budget was Rs6 crore.

"Due to the present circumstances, it has been worked out that to hold the festival in a very modest manner, we would require (at least) Rs3 crore. Of this, the Kerala State Chalachitra Academy (the state-owned body that conducts the IFFK) will be able to bring in Rs2 crore and they should be allowed to take Rs1 crore from the plan funds.

"If that's not possible, then things might not work out," said AK Balan.

The final decision will be made only after Vijayan returns from Delhi.

"Rs3 crore is needed and we have decided to cancel the inaugural and closing ceremonies, and increase the delegate fees and no free passes would be issued. We have also planned to cut down on expensive films and on the hotel expenses," added AK Balan.

Yesterday, the official page of IFFK had posted that the festival would roll this year.

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