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PACBI-InCACBI protests against Israeli film festival hosted by the Israeli Consul in Bangalore

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Bookmark and Share         Print   Send Email | 3 July 2014

InCACBI protests against Israeli film festival hosted by the Israeli Consul in Bangalore

The year-old Consulate General of Israel in Bangalore, the third after Delhi and Mumbai, is hosting the first official Israeli film festival from July 3 to 31 jointly with Suchitra Film Society and Bangalore Cultural Partners.
Menahem Kanafi, Israel's Consul General in Bangalore, said he hoped the festival would bring the peoples of the two countries culturally close. Mr. Kanafi, who is in charge of Israeli matters in Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, said, "The festival will expose [India to] the facets of life in Israel and point out universal connections between Israeli and Indian art and life.”
Do we in India want to be “culturally close” to Israel?
Gaza is, at present, under attack; hundreds of Palestinians have been picked up, and some youngsters killed, all to punish Hamas for the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teenagers. Hamas has denied its involvement. The real motive seems to be the Israeli state’s anxiety about moves toward Palestinian unity. This is in addition to the ongoing day to day realities of occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, as well as rampant discrimination against Palestinians within Israel.
In 2004, PACBI ( called for individuals and institutions all over the world to refrain from any form of academic and cultural cooperation, collaboration or joint projects with Israeli institutions. We, a group of academics, artists and activists in India came together in June 2010 to extend support to the international campaign for the academic and cultural boycott of Israel (



Should Israel be admitted into the global cultural arena when it does not respect international law and recognize the Palestinian people s right to freedom, equality and justice? At a time when the international movement to isolate Israel is gaining ground in response to the escalation of Israel’s colonial and racist policies, should we hold events sponsored by the Israeli state in India?


We in InCACBI condemn the film festival in Bangalore as yet another plan to promote links between Indian and Israel by compromising cultural practitioners as well as citizens of conscience in both India and Israel. The new government in Delhi has already expressed its intention to draw even closer to Israel. By doing this, it will further implicate all Indians of conscience in the subjugation of Palestinians by Israel.


We appeal to all members of the theatre and arts world in India, and civil society, to join us in protesting against these attempts. Israel’s policies cannot be whitewashed with “culture”, “art” or “festivals”. We appeal to Indian groups such as Suchitra Film Society and Bangalore Cultural Partners to withdraw from their partnership with the Israel Consul. In the spirit of international solidarity and resistance to injustice and oppression, we call upon fellow Indians to comprehensively and consistently boycott all Israeli cultural partnerships between Israel and India.


For The Indian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel




(Indian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel)

N Pushpamala, Convenor (Artist)
Sukumar Muralisharan, Convenor (Journalist)
Githa Hariharan, Convenor (Writer)
Prabir Purkayastha, Convenor (Delhi Science Forum)
Saeed Mirza (Film-maker)
Gargi Sen, (Film-maker)
Amar Kanwar (Film-maker)
Anand  Patwardhan (Film-maker)
Saba Dewan (Film-maker)
Ira  Bhaskar (Film-maker)
Ein Lall (Film-maker)
K Satchidanandan (Writer)
Ritu Menon (Publisher)
Achin Vanaik (Academic)
Pamela Philipose (Journalist)
M.K. Raina (Theatre)
Ram Rahman (Artist)
Sheba Chhachhi (Artist)
Vivan Sundaram (Artist)
Amita Kanekar (Writer)
Ayisha Abraham (Artist)
Brijesh Kumar  (Theatre)
Geeta Kapoor (Art Critic)
Meena Menon (Writer)
Moloyshree Hashmi (Theatre)
Saba Hasan (Artist)
Sriram Ananth (Writer)
Terri Ginsberg (Film Scholar)
And 200 other members of InCACBI

Posted on 04-07-2014

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