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Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles Announces Jury Members

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LOS ANGELES (Diya TV) — Renowned actor Rizwan Manji and writer-director Shonali Bose are among the named jury selections for the 2016 feature and short film contests at the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA).

Additionally, Shalini Dore of Variety and international film consultant Alesia Weston will join the feature film judging panel. Director Aldo Velasco and documentary filmmaker Laura Nix will work alongside Manji to judge the festival’s short film submissions.

Now in its 14th running, the IFFLA celebrates excellence in Indian cinema by showcasing films that promote diverse representations of the country’s culture — this year’s edition of the festival will honor legendary director Bimal Roy with a screening of his beloved SUJATA. Bringing together the best of Hollywood and Bollywood, the festival will feature over 25 productions from the Indian filmmaking community.

The jury-awards will be announced on the last day of the festival before the closing night film on April 10th.

A new addition to the festival, a roundtable discussion surrounding the current state of indie filmmaking in the India will take place, and will be moderated by Sundance Film Festival’s John Nein.

IFFLA Filmmaker Roundtable

IFFLA Filmmaker Roundtable participants

The festival is set to take place from April 6th – 10th at the ArcLight Theater in Hollywood — Diya TV is a media sponsor of the event.

To kick off the festivities, Pan Nalin returns to IFFLA with the U.S premiere of  ‘ANGRY INDIAN GODDESSES’. In 2014 Nalin was awarded the Audience Choice Award for his film ‘Faith Connections’. Additionally, Anu Menon’s film, ‘WAITING’, starring Naseeruddin Shah and Kalki Koechlin, will make its North American debut to close the festival.

Angry Indian Goddesses

Angry Indian Goddesses

The festival will include three world premieres, including IFFLA alum Kranti Kanade’s CRD, two North American premieres, and ten U.S. premieres.This year’s edition of IFFLA will also be focussed on ‘Celebrating Women’.

From the legendary Deepa Mehta a gangster drama BEEBA BOYS; a film that will examine the relationship of Punjabi mothers & their sons. Leena Yadav’s PARCHED, a story of four women in patriarchal culture; Ruchika Oberoi’s genre-bending ISLAND CITY; and Rinku Kalsy’s documentary FOR THE LOVE OF A MAN on South Indian superstar Rajinikanth’s fans.
The short film lineup features Pritha Chakraborty’s documentary SILENT VOICES; Megha Ramaswamy’s experimental BUNNY; Payal Sethi’s LEECHES; Sonejuhi Sinha’s Cannes selection LOVE COMES LATER; and Pallavi MD and Shamik Sen Gupta’s PLAYGROUNDS.

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The complete list of the films can be found here.

Arts & Culture

Indian CEO’s meet with President Trump in London

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Indian CEOs and Trump

LONDON (Diya TV) — A number of prominent Indian CEOs from the US and the UK met with President Trump during a breakfast roundtable on his visit to London. Members of the American cabinet were also in attendance, including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, as well as the president’s daughter, Ivanka.

The Punjab government announced free education for girls in government schools and colleges from Nursery school to the PhD level. They also announced free Wi-FI for 13,000 schools and all 48 government colleges.

Rayna Gokli McIntyre will be a new District Court Judge in Colorado, becoming the second South Asian member to the bench in that state.

In New Jersey, Zahid Quraishi was named a U.S. Magistrate Judge, becoming the first Asian American federal judge in that state.

And Karamjit and Karawjit Singh took danger to new heights with this coconut and melon smashing display on America’s Got Talent, all while wearing a blindfold.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Trump ends $5.6B GSP trade preference for India

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WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — President Trump is ending $5.6 billion worth of trade concessions for India under the Generalized Scheme of Preferences program effective this week, saying India failed to assure the U.S. that it would provide ‘equitable and reasonable access to the markets of India.

Bay Area Congressmembers Zoe Lofgren and Anna Eshoo reintroduced a bill to save work authorization visas for H-4 holders whose spouses are on track to get a green card. Many of those eligible are Indian American women.

Oklahoma’s State Board of Education released new social studies standards, which for the first time include Sikhism. Nearly 700,000 students in Oklahoma public schools will now learn more about the Sikh community, in this effort spearheaded by the Sikh Coalition.

The Golden State Warriors played through two more injuries to rotation players to beat the Raptors in Toronto 109-104 to even the NBA Finals at a game a piece.

Diya TV’s Ravi Kapur and Jonathan Choe are on-site and will have more courtside.

And we talk to the stars of Netflix’s newest romantic comedy ‘Always Be My Maybe,’ a feature that offers a story & characters Asian Americans will find relatable from some of the most talented names in Hollywood.

Ravi Kapur & Alejandro Quintana contributed to this report.

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Campaigning stopped in West Bengal due to violence

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West Bengal violence

KOLKATA, India (Diya TV) — For the first time in India’s electoral history, the Election Commission ordered campaigning to stop a day early in West Bengal because of violence between political factions in Kolkata.

SAALT released an overview of the growth in the South Asian demographic around America and it shows the community is increasing exponentially.

SAALT says the South Asian population in the U.S. grew a stunning 40% in seven years, from 3.5 million in 2010 to 5.4 million in 2017.

The first ever Sikh American mayor of a large city, Ravi Bhalla, was portrayed by a New Jersey-based website in a photoshopped image as an Arab dictator. Supporters of Bhalla, who is the mayor of Hoboken, are denouncing the image as racist and want the “Hudson Mile Square View” to take it down.

And the Indian government held an event at the Cannes Film Festival to promote the world’s largest film industry.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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