ISLAMABAD: Considered to be a major source of promotion for regional languages, films in the vernacular were either banned or their narratives were greatly altered under the Zia era.
These were the views expressed by speakers at a session on ‘cinema in mother languages’ on the second day of the Mother Languages Literature Festival at Lok Virsa on Sunday.
Akbar Hoti said that Pushto films initially used to focus on local folklore of Gul Khan and Sher Bano and of their love for the land. But later, these were replaced by low quality films which can be seen today.
Naz Sahito talked about how Sindhi films, which used to talk about and highlighted the pain of partition especially through songs, had long died.
Aijaz Gul, who has worked primarily on Urdu language films, said that a lot of Bengali directors based their work on social problems faced by the people in East and West Pakistan. Balochi language was perhaps one of the most neglected sectors with only one recognised Balochi film, which was made in 1970s. However, that film could not be screened then.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 20th, 2017.