Imphal: The Manipur Cine Commission, the monitoring agency of Manipur State Cine Policy, is set to urge the state government to lay out a proper financial outlay for various film activities in the state.
Although the state government has already adopted and notified the Manipur State Cine Policy 2020, the Commission wouldn’t be able to perform any activities including film festivals, academic activities, revival of Cinemahalls and creation of eco system for the film sector due to lack of financial provision in the state budget, said an official.
The Commission, which held a two-day marathon meeting on December 18-19, to work out the financial component required for effective implementation of the Cine Policy, sought the immediate intervention of the state government, he added.
The meeting chaired by Commissioner, Art and Culture, M Joy, not only deliberated all aspects of the policy, it also decided to submit a comprehensive recommendation to the 4th Manipur State Finance Commission for approval of annual budgetary allocation for implementing the Cine policy.
The recommendations included annual outlay for organising an annual Manipur International Film Festival and other festivals, academic activities, Manipur State Film and Television Institute, film archiving and documentation of the history of Manipuri cinema, the institution of the Manipur Cine Corporation, establishing a Visual Industry/Film City, comprising content creation centers for gaming, advertisements, animation, television programming and production and post-production studios and labs, creation of a single window for processing permission and licenses for all film-related activities to ease carrying out film-related activities, including easing filmmaking in Manipur for outside film crews and immediate steps for reviving cinema halls with State of Art technology among others.
The worrying trend, the official disclosed, is that all the cinema halls in Manipur have been lying defunct over the last few years, partly due to Covid pandemic. Also, almost all the theatres have either turned into shopping malls or educational institutions, he added. According to UNESCO guidelines, cinema halls are to be established in an area where its population is over twenty thousand, yet this is not the case anymore in the state, he said.
Director, Art and Culture, L Kishorjit Singh and Secretary, Manipur State Film Development Society, MSFDS, Sunzu Bachaspatimayum as government representatives and state’s film community represented by Presidents of Film Forum, S. Mangoljao and Critic Association Manipur, Laimayum Surjakanta Sharma, Vice President, Manipur Film Society, Salam Rajesh, film director, Haobam Paban Kumar, film producer, Alexander Leo Pou and Film exhibitor, Laishram Sanatomba Meetei, participated in the meeting.
This crucial initiative is being taken up after the assurance given by Chief Minister, N. Biren Singh, who heads the MSFDS and the Department of Art and Culture, on the floor of the State Legislative Assembly that his government would take concrete steps for the promotion and development of the film sector in Manipur while replying to a question by the opposition MLA, Kangujam Ranjit Singh on the deteriorating status of film culture in Manipur.