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Direction: Vani Subramanian

Cinematography: Yasir Abbasi, Yousuf Saeed

Edit: Atul Gupta, Vani Subramanian

Sound: Asheesh Pandya

Produced by: PSBT

62 mins | English, Hindi | English Subtitles | 2007


Urban Lens Film Festival, 2016

7th Kara Film Festival, Karachi, Pakistan, 2009

Cornell Cinema, Ithaca, USA, 2009

Mahila Matinee, Bhopal, 2009

River to River, Florence Indian Film Festival, 2008

14th Kolkata Film Festival, 2008

Travelling Film South Asia, 2008

1st International Video Festival of Kerala (IVFK), Thiruvananthapuram, 2008

3rd Cinemela, New Delhi 2008

4th IAWRT Asian Women’s Film Festival, 2008

The Mumbai International Film Festival 2008

Shared Histories Festival, Johannesburg, 2007

Signs 2007, Thiruvananthapuram

The Open Frame, a PSBT-UNESCO Festival, New Delhi 2007

Nord-Sud Media Encounters, Geneva 2007


"For two decades, the destruction of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya has influenced national events in India. But beyond the symbolism that the Uttar Pradesh town holds for the rest of the country, how has that event affected life in Ayodhya itself? Blocked and barricaded, the only access to the citizens is through memory: the telling of stories, the hearing of tales, the very gatha of Ayodhya’s people."

These are the words with which I used to summarise what I was trying to do when I made Ayodhya Gatha. For the decades that followed, Ayodhya sort of remained the same, while the politics of right wing Hindutva hate against Muslims, Christians, Dalits, women and many others on the margins across the country heightened beyond our wildest imagination.

With the Supreme Court granting virtual impunity to the demolishers of the disputed 16 Century Babri Masjid, casting aside the pain of all the lives lost in the violence in the build up and as a consequence of the so-called temple campaign, and sanctioning all but 5 acres of the land to the temple trust the die was cast for where we stand today.

The 'country' is being mobilised to 'celebrate Diwali' on 22 Jan 2023, which will mark, we are told, 'the return of Ram after 500 years.' But let's be clear: Whatever this temple is, it isn't a symbol of peace. It has too much blood and hate and pain at its heart.

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