Delhi: Information and Broadcasting (I&B) Minister Smriti Irani, who was due to inaugurate the India Pavilion at the 71st Cannes Film Festival on Wednesday, skipped the event where a delegation of filmmakers and artistes are making strides to push the country’s regional films and further collaborations with other countries.
Irani, who was to lead the delegation, is caught up with work related to the 15th Asia Media Summit to be held in New Delhi from 10 to 12 May as well as the Karnataka Assembly elections, informed sources told IANS. Irani was supposed to be in Cannes for a day. The inaugural session of the Indian Pavilion was held in Cannes on Wednesday.
Hosted by actor Sharad Kelkar, it saw the presence of Indian ambassador to France Vinay Mohan Kwatra, Ashok Kumar Parmar, Joint Secretary (Films), Ministry of I&B; writer, poet and Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) Chairperson Prasoon Joshi, CBFC member Vani Tripathi Tikoo, Jerome Paillard, Executive Director, Marche Du Film Festival (Cannes Film Market), actress Huma Qureshi, and filmmakers Shaji N Karun, Jahnu Barua and Bharat Bala.
The agenda this year is to showcase diversity in films in India and boosting co-productions. Paillard said in a statement, “The Indian pavilion is a very important tool to help connecting the worldwide European and worldwide community of films.”