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Gems of Indian cinema at Abu Dhabi film fest

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Movie buffs at the seventh edition of the Film Festival (ADFF), which begins here Oct 24, will be able to enjoy classics like "Pyaasa" and "Duvidha" from Indian cinema which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.

"Celebrating Indian Cinema" is a select programme of some of the most admired films produced in a century of the $2 billion industry," read a statement on the ADFF official website.

Guru Dutt's "Pyaasa", which also featured in Time magazine's 2005 list of All Time 100 Best Movies, will be screened at the gala. The movie narrates the story of a poet struggling to be recognised in post-independence India.

Ritwak Ghatak's 1965 Bengali film "Subarnarekha" will be showcased as part of the programme while "Duvidha", helmed by Ghatak's student Mani Kaul in 1973, will also be shown to the audience at the international extravaganza which concludes Nov 2.

The programme includes "Garm Hava", a 1974 movie which was also the Indian submission for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film category. It was directed by M.S. Sathyu. The film, about the plight of a Muslim family in post-partition India, is credited with being a pioneer of a new wave of Hindi art cinema.

Jahnu Barua's Assamese film "Halodhia Choraye Baodhan Khai", about a hardworking rice farmer's life, is also a part of the special programme.

A total of nine Indian films will find screen space at the fest.

The line up includes Punjabi movie "Qissa" which is set in post-colonial India in 1947 and narrates the story of a Sikh who is forced to flee his village due to ethnic cleansing. Starring Irrfan Khan, it will have its Middle East premiere.

There will also be Marathi movie "Fandry" by Nagraj Manjule. The film zooms in on a story on India's caste system.

Bengali filmmaker Aparna Sen's "Goynar Baksho", starring her daughter Konkona Sen Sharma, will have its Gulf premiere at ADFF, which will also screen Richie Mehta's "Siddharth" about a poor Delhi street merchant desperately searching for his missing young son.

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