The Forest comes to the city: “Vatavaran”, India’s largest festival on environment and wildlife issues – New Delhi

Report by filmmaker Kavita Bahl

It was a unique initiative in many ways. Never before had CMS Vatavaran film festival, the largest festival on environment and wildlife issues in the country, hosted anything like this.

The film festival into its 8th edition this year has always focussed on screening of films and discussions. This was the first time that there was the presence of aboriginal and organic farmers at the festival- with their food system. We were lucky to be a part of the synergy created by many organisations, people’s groups, and, individuals.

The festival-goers which include students, academicians, film-lovers, activists, administrators, teachers and general public, were seen holding extensive discussions with the farmers and also purchasing their produce with great enthusiasm. It became a beautiful space for meaningful interactions.

The fresh food made in traditional ways with authentic ingredients was cooked daily and eaten with great relish at the festival.

It could only be made possible due to partnership and faith displayed by so many people. Lots of hand-holding was done by well-wishers like you whose faith in our ability gave us lots of strength and encouragement to keep going.

Source: Personal communication (9 December 2015)

Kavita Bahl and Nandan Saxena made the award winning film “I cannot give you my forest” | Synopsis | Learn more about their documentary | Festival website:

Kavita Bahl
Director, Top Quark Films Private Limited
Delhi, India
099100 37244

Press reports

Coverage of the CMS Vatavaran film festival and the film I cannot give you my Forest:


CMS VATAVARAN – International Environment & Wildlife Film Festival and Forum is India’s only International Film Festival This is an outcome of CMS’s core commitment to go “beyond research” ( Based on extensive research, this festival (competitive and travelling) was initiated for encouraging environment films and forums that result in perception, practice and policy change. CMS VATAVARAN has been involved multifariously in policy research and programmes evaluation aimed at creating sustainable solutions for environment protection.


The festival aims to bring to the fore larger environmental concerns through films. It forges a dialogue and generate timely debate on the topical environmental issues involving the public. A film festival with a difference, CMS VATAVARAN…
a). is an activity forum promoting space for environment issues in the public media;
b). is a movement reaching out to people in various walks of life, it enhances and inspires understanding and appreciation of the natural world and the need for conservation;
c). is an attempt to change minds, attitudes and policies;
d). is an initiative galvanizing civil society and promoting a platform provoking the larger public and opinion making process;
e). encourages and nurtures a new breed of “alternate filmmakers” who are passionate about environmental issues and through their films want to articulate the environmental concerns to initiate dialogue and public debate;
f).stimulates production of high quality films in the fields of wildlife, nature and environment.

Source: Withoutabox
Date Visited: Sat Dec 12 2015 20:56:57 GMT+0100 (CET)


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