How Do I Survive, My Friend!
Kaise Jeebo Re!

INDIA / 1997 / English, local dialects of Hindi/ Color / Video / 80 min

Director, Editing:
Anurag Singh & Jharana Jhaveri
Script: Krishna Kumar & Smitu Kothari
Photography: Anurag Singh
Sound: Uma Shankar
Music: Rahul Ram & Ashim Chakrobarty
Narration: Krishna Kumar
Production Company, Source: Jan Madhyam
MD-4 Sah Vikas Society, 68 I.P. Extension, Delhi 110092 INDIA
Phone & Fax: 91-11-221-7084
E-mail: jharana@del2.vsnl.net.in

Anurag Singh,
Jharana Jhaveri

The two have been making films on issues of social, political, environmental and human rights concerns since 1991. Mr. Singh comes from a small tribal village and his local wisdom and understanding are reflected in the themes and treatment of the films. Ms Jhaveri has trained as a student of social movements and political action. Her commitment to democratic rights and social justice have helped shape the fabric of half a dozen films made by them. Films, for them, are an instrument of social transformation, as well as being a creative endeavor and a medium of political-expression.

A record of the plight of villagers whose homes were repeatedly submerged by the construction of reservoir dams on the Narmada River. Revealing the facts on one hand, the filmmakers give voice to the uprooted people, whose heroic stance of non-violent protest is immortalized in a symbolic image: villagers standing by their houses in chest-high water in defiance of the flooding of their lands.

Directors' Statement

This is a film made over seven years in the Narmada valley by shooting more than 250 hours of footage. We documented people's history as it was unfolding in front of their own eyes. These are stories of a people's struggle for justice against forcible uprootment that may never find a place in history books. Over these seven years we walked through interior villages along the mighty river Narmada in Central India, often traveling in single log-boats, at times to places with no electricity or roads, documenting and sharing the experiences of a civilization slated for submergence.
How do these tribal communities continue to battle and keep their pride, strength, wisdom, and hope alive? What are the forces that govern a democratic nation to undertake such projects? What are the politics of large dams in a third world "developing" nation? What are the costs of such projects and who pays for them? What happens to a people who have lived by a river valley for centuries, once they are uprooted? How does the state machinery break a people with false promises and assurances in the name of "The Greater Common Good"? Why at the end of this century are dams no more the "temples of modern India" as so fatefully believed the world over, not long ago? These are some of the issues and questions that the film tries to ponder over.
This film is not only a documentation of a people's history but a film for the people of the Narmada valley. It was screened more than 200 times across the valley over the last two years. The film has made its rounds having reached 40 universities in the US and Europe and most major towns in India.
@ beforenext

COPYRIGHT:Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival Organizing Committee