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One Century, A Million Milestones- Anna M.M. Vetticad

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- Anna M.M. Vetticad (आप अन्‍ना के लेख यहां पढ़ सकते हैं। ) Byari: An Indian language that even most Indians have not heard of. Byari: The title of the Best Feature Film at this year’s National Awards. For a foreigner, there is no better showcase of Indian heterogeneity than Indian cinema. And to understand India’s wildly diverse cinema in the 100th year since the release of the country’s first feature film, Raja Harishchandra, there are few commentaries more educative than the National Film Awards that were given away last month. For most of the world, Indian cinema is synonymous with Bollywood song and dance, but neither Byari nor Deool – joint winners of the Best Feature Film Award – would fall into that slot. For one, they are not in Hindi. Byari is made in a little-known dialect spoken by a Muslim community inhabiting the country’s south-western coastline, and highlights the impact on women of stringent religious and social codes. Deool, a Marathi film, is about socio-pol…