‘Looking for Challan’, a poignant film produced by the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA) and directed by Bappa Ray, clinched the coveted National Award for the ‘Best Investigative Film’ category. Dr. Sachchidanand Joshi, Member Secretary of IGNCA, along with Bappa Ray, received the prestigious accolade from President Smt. Droupadi Murmu in an esteemed ceremony held at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi. This outstanding recognition of ‘Looking for Challan’ as the ‘Best Investigative Film’ this year serves as a testament to the team’s unwavering dedication and collaborative spirit. The film was honoured with the prestigious ‘Rajat Kamal’ (Certificate of Excellence) and a cash prize of Rs. 50,000.
‘Looking for Challan’ intricately delves into the enchanting world of Kerala’s Nilambur forest culture and heritage. It draws its essence and intended message from the profound cultural richness of Kerala’s forest regions, while also shedding light on the untold narratives of the Cholanaikkan community.
Bappa Ray expressed his heartfelt gratitude, emphasizing that the film’s journey has been nothing short of an honour. He firmly believes that this esteemed recognition will further ignite their passion to unravel more undiscovered stories. He added that the film rightfully earned this recognition, and the achievement of this can be attributed to the unwavering dedication and patience of the whole team.
Beyond being a cinematic masterpiece, ‘Looking for Challan’ serves as a powerful testimony to the capacity of storytelling to bridge gaps, celebrate culture, and evoke transformation. It is a transformative journey not only for the filmmaker but also for all those who rediscover the allure of nature and the resilience of the Cholanaikkan community. The Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts remains committed to bringing forth untold stories that yearn to be shared. Through IGNCA’s relentless efforts, cinematic marvels such as ‘Looking for Challan’ find their voice and profoundly touch the hearts of audiences worldwide.