‘Siya ‘- A gut-wrenching saga of a girl who fights for justice

‘Siya’ is an impactful movie which reflects our social justice system. It an attempt to portray the humane side of individuals who had been wronged. These were the words of Manish Mundra, director of the movie ‘Siya’, a gut wrenching saga of a girl who fights against a vicious patriarchal system for justice. Manish Mundra, who had produced some of the finest films such as Aankhon Dekhi, Masaan and Newton, dons the director’s hat for the first time for ‘Siya’.

While interacting with the media and festival delegates at one of the ‘Table Talks’ sessions being organised by PIB on the side-lines of the 53rd International Film Festival of India in Goa, Manish Mundra said the film is a sincere effort to understand the painful process the victims go through in their journey seeking justice. “We all also should feel the same pain and agony of the victims which in turn should help us to be responsible citizens,” he said.

‘Siya’, a soul stirring take on the horror and pains of rape victims, is a film inspired by a real life incident where a young girl from a rural village of North India, decides to fight for justice after being sexually assaulted. She dares to fight for justice and starts a movement against the flawed justice system which is turned into a puppet in the hands of the powerful.

On being asked about the choice of his subjects for making films, as ‘Siya’ is based on real life incidents, Manish Mundra has this to say: “I am very passionate about making films. I don’t look for commercial blockbusters. I pick subjects which touches my heart and soul. The story should stir the souls of the audience for eternity.”

Speaking about the biggest dilemma that exists in our society when it comes to fighting legal battles where the victims are brutally pushed to the corner by the society, Manish said that people don’t have the courage to take the first step. Even if somehow they decide to take that step, they perfectly know that it is suffixed by unimaginable pain which requires a lot of courage. “This reflects our social justice system,” he said adding that our concern regarding such issues has no shelf life.We forget them immediately and move on without seeking any solace for the victims.

On being asked about depicting the various positive aspects which exists in the society instead of negativity, Manish Mundra said it is important to render the truth of the society in a film like ‘Siya’. “It not just sadness. Our film is soulful. It is about the truth and that truth has pain, happiness, hope and despair in it.” There are always praises and brickbats, but it’s important to reflect on positivity and show the truth of society in movies. That is my style of movie making, he added and said, “Realistic movies always have a great shelf life and will strike the psyche of people.”

Sharing his unquenching passion to make movies from across India, Manish Mundra expressed his wish to be a pan Indian film maker and added, “When somebody sees all my movies over a period of time, it should give them a taste of India.”

Rewinding his 8 years journey as film producer and now about his debut film as director, Manish Mundra said as a human being he always have taken various challenges. “The directorial side has its own set of challenges and pressure which motivates me to excel in movie making,” he added.

The film is competing under the Best Debut Feature Film of a Director category with a collection of 6 international and Indian fiction feature debuts that exemplify what the next generation of filmmakers are envisioning onscreen. ‘Siya’ was screened under Feature Films Section of Indian Panorama at IFFI 53. Actors Pooja Pandey and Vineet Kumar Singh have played the role of protagonists, Sita and Mahendra in the film.

About the movie

Director: Manish Mundra

Producer: Drishyam Films

Screenplay: Manish Mundra

Cinematographer: Rafey Mahmood & Subhransu Kumar Das

Editor: Manendra Singh Lodhi

Cast: Pooja Pandey, Vineet Kumar Singh

2022 | Hindi | Colour | 108 mins.

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