KASHISH – A Queer Film Festival

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Kashish 2012

Kashish 2012

Kashish is a queer film festival prevalent in Mumbai since 2010. After the historic judgement given by Delhi High Court on legalisation of homosexuality in India, Kashish presented the queer world to Indians through the medium of movies. It is the first Indian queer film festival to be held in mainstream theaters and to have received the clearance from the  Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.

‘Queer’ is a term encompassing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgered people; in other words, the LGBT community. Mumbai is a vibrant city representing a major LGBT  crowd and hence is the appropriate host of this festival. The festival not only screens Indian movies but also those from around the world.

The first edition of Kashish was held from April 22 – 25, 2010 at two venues simultaneously – PVR Cinemas, Juhu and Alliance Française de Bombay, Marine Lines. It screened 110 films from 25 countries with over 1200 people attending. The second edition took place between May 25-29 , 2011. Kashish 2012 will be held between May 23-29, 212 at Cinemax, Andheri (W) and Alliance Francaise de Bombay. It will showcase 120 countries from 29 countries. Solaris Pictures, a film production company dealing on LGBT issues and HIV/AIDS  and Bombay Dost – India’s first gay magazine- in association with the Humsafar Trust, organizes this annual event. Humsafar Trust is a Mumbai based NGO promoting LGBT rights.

For Everyone  is the theme of this edition; it targets the LGBT community as well as the people around them, be it their family or their friends. Kashish-meaning  ‘allurement or attraction‘ in Urdu – aims to showcase queer movies and to put forward the complexities and daily ups and downs of the Indian LGBT community. It also aims to show the society a glimpse of the queer group, their thoughts as well as their desires. Along with these objectives, Kashish also hopes to entertain the masses.


Alliance Francaise de Bombay, which has been a staunch supporter of Kashish since its inception, is happy to know that this year’s country in focus is France.  It will bring along with it two films and six short films ranging from different genres. Gigola is a lesbian story of a young girl who becomes a gigola (the feminine of gigolo). The movie explores the nightlife, the cabarets and the homosexual scene in 1960’s Paris. Gigola is  directed by  Laure Charpentier, also a well known author. Le Fil ( The String) by Mehdi Ben Attia, a Tunisian movie co-produced by France, narrates the story of Malik, heir of a bourgeoise family of Tunis, who openly declares his homosexuality. The film had to face obstacles during its filming in Tunisia where this subject still remains a taboo.

Country Focus – France program is brought in association with Embassy of France in India, Institut Français and Alliance Française de Bombay.

The festival is open and free to everyone.

For more details on the festival, please check their website : http://www.mumbaiqueerfest.com/

Photographie du film argentin : Burnt Money, Plata quemada Director: Marcelo Pineyro,


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Directeur de publication : Délégation Générale de la Fondation Alliance Française en Inde et au Népal

Rédacteur en chef : Laurent Elisio Bordier

Rédacteur/Coordinateur national : Siddharth Bhatt

Rédacteurs, contributeurs : Guillaume, Abhirami, Alexandre, Chintan, Cléa, David, Eleonore, Elie, Kanika, Karine, Nita, Thomas, Malvika, Marie-Joëlle, Meera, Mayuri, Mitushi, Alice, Prutha, Romain, Ritika, Manas, Supriya ...