NEW YORK — The 3rd Annual South Asia Human Rights Film & Video Festival opens here April 7. The three-day festival features dynamic full-length films and documentaries by South Asian directors and independent filmmakers, throwing light on issues such as HIV/AIDS, women’s rights, sexuality, peace and conflict. Film directors and human rights activists will join the discussion after each screening.

All films will be screened at the Asia Society (see box at bottom). Below is a summary of the films and screening schedule.

Thursday, April 7, 6:30 p.m.
“We’ll Meet Again” (India)
The story of a young woman who loses her job due to her HIV status, the film showcases the struggle of a girl to fight for her rights against all odds.

Friday, April 8, 6:30 p.m. “Silent Waters” (Pakistan)
The film is set in 1979 in Pakistan, when General Zia-ul-Haq took control of the country and stoked the fires of Islamic nationalism (see adjacent review).

Saturday, April 9
12:00-2:15 p.m. Documentaries:

Beyond Conflict
“Search For Freedom” (Pakistan)
Explores the personal lives of four Afghan women based in Pakistan.
“Crossing the Lines: Kashmir, Pakistan, India” (Pakistan)
After four wars, Kashmiris and their land are divided between Pakistan and India, the source of recurring crises.

3:00–5:15 p.m. Documentaries:
Resisting Boundaries?
“Love For A Longer Life” (Nepal)
Shows the challenges facing countries like Nepal in confronting the pandemic of HIV/AIDS.

“Many People, Many Desires” (India)
Explores the status of sexual minorities in India. It is only since the early 1980s that homosexuality and transgender expressions have become visible “identity issues” in India.

“Facing the Future” (Bangladesh)
Women in Bangladesh have come increasingly under acid attacks as a form of retaliation. As the attacks increase, Bangladesh’s civil society agitates for stricter punishment for the criminals and better care for the victims.

6:00 p.m. Feature
“A Passion Play” (India)

The story is set in the early 1900s against the backdrop of political resistance during the Bengal partition and highlights the plight of Bengali widows during the time of social unrest.

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