Wyndham City Councillor Intaj Khan came out in support of his colleague Cr Gautam Gupta’s suggestion that IFFM films need to be screened in the Wyndham City area to make the festival more relevant for the Indian community. In a statement to The Indian Sun Cr Khan said: “I welcome Cr Gautam Gupta’s suggestions to Minister Asher. I would also recommend 30% of all festival films to be screened in the Wyndham area. After all, the majority of Indians live in this area.”
Cr Gautam Gupta from the City of Wyndham on 19 February had stated in an open letter to Minister Asher that she refused to acknowledge his plea for public consultation on the IFFM. Cr Gupta released a set of suggestions to the minister on the film festival. In the set of suggestions, he asked for more films to be screened in areas like “Wyndham and Epping”. Cr Gupta and Cr Khan are two prominent and vocal supporters of Indian interests in the area. They have worked on many pressing matters linked to the Indian community recently. Cr Gupta is in charge of diversity in the council, and Cr Khan is handling economic development.
“The coalition government has neglected the West for too long and it will be a good gesture if they can bring the festival to the West. I’m passionate about Melbourne’sWest and this will be a significant milestone in our cultural history,” added Cr Khan.
With regards to Cr Gupta’s suggestion on Vidya Balan visiting significant cultural spots to promote Melbourne’s multicultural identity, Cr Khan said: “I welcome this suggestion of Cr Gupta as well. I appreciate Mitu Bowmick and the IFFM team’s work.The IFFM team and the brand ambassador could tour the West and we could show them Tarneit Gurudwara, Rockbank Temple and Virgin Mary Mosque in Hoppers Crossing. This will put the spotlight on a predominantly Indian area in Victoria highlighting our lifestyle and our cultural interests. I strongly recommend this.”
Vidya Balan has in the past visited iconic Melbourne institutions like the MCG. Cr Gupta is of the opinion that MCG is a very well known spot among Indians and it does not need anymore exposure and this time around she should visit spots like the Little India precinct in Dandenong and cultural and religious institutions that Indians have nurtured in Australia that reflect their faith and lifestyle. “Our lifestyle in the West will generate more interest than the MCG,” said Cr Gupta to The Indian Sun.
Published in The Indian Sun (Indian Newspaper in Melbourne)