The Kashmir Files premiered in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane on 11 March 2022 to packed audiences.
Shots from the Melbourne screening
Glimpses from Melbourne
The movie currently has an IMDb rating of 10/10 based on 18,000 reviews.
Ralive, Chalive and Galive
The movie commences with a young boy - Shiva Pandit being beaten up for cheering for Sachin Tendulkar during an Inda-Pakistan match.
As he and his friend manage to escape and run off, they hear chants of Ralive Chalive Galive (convert, leave or die) reverberate in the air as they try to get back home.
Shiva had no clue that on that night his father, while hiding inside a rice barrel, would be shot dead by Islamic terrorists.
This scene is based on the true story of Telecom Engineer - BK Ganjoo who was killed on 22 March 1990. His wife was then forced to eat rice from the barrel soaked in her husband’s blood.
A spate of Hindu massacres
The Nadimarg massacre of 23 March 2003, where 24 Kashmiri Pandits were killed by terrorists dressed as army men, is recreated in the movie.
So is the story of the poet - Sarwanand Kaul and his son Virendra Kaul who were killed by three Jihadists who visited them on the night of 29 April 1990. A day later their bodies were found hanging from trees.
Girija Tickoo worked as a laboratory assistant at a school in the Kashmir Valley. She was kidnapped, gang-raped, sodomised, tortured and her body cut in pieces by a mechanical saw while she was still alive.
A sanitised version of this incident is portrayed by Sharda Pandit in the film.
There is a short scene about the killing of the Jammu & Kashmir High Court judge - Neelkant Ganjoo. Ganjoo had sentenced the terrorist and founder of Jammu-Kashmir Liberation Front ("JKLF") Maqbool Bhat to death.
Ravi Khanna and three other Indian Air Force officers were shot dead on 25 January 1990 allegedly by a group led by JKLF chief Yasin Malik. This incident is part of the movie shown in Australia. However, a Jammu District Court has restrained the makers from showing this scene after it was approached by Nirmal Khanna - wife of Ravi, who claimed that the scene was “contrary to facts.”
The character of Farooq Bitta is a combination of Bitta Karate and Yaseen Malik.
You can watch their videos here:
Pakistan’s then Prime-Minister Benazir Bhutto had made an incendiary speech calling for azadi of Kashmir from India in 1989. This call, and the subsequent massacre of Kashmiri Hindus while chanting azadi, are depicted in the movie.
Nivedita Menon – a professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University had famously said that India has illegally occupied Kashmir. Her role is played with aplomb by Pallavi Joshi.
Reaction of Australian Hindus
These are the reactions that are coming in from Australian Hindus who have watched the movie:
This viewer became very emotional.
Amendra Singh , President of the Australian Hindu Association shared his thoughts after the Sydney premiere on Twitter
1) The connivance of the Kashmir State govt machinery with the terrorists is unforgivable
2) The incompetence & indifference of the Indian Central govt was disgraceful.
3) That it took over 30 years before a reputable film-maker was able to make a realistic movie on this topic, only reinforces the analysis done by @GemsOfBollywood that the agenda of Bollywood is to glorify Islam & denigrate Hindus.
4) This is only the beginning. One 3 hour movie cannot possibly do justice to the murders, pillage, rapes, displacement & trauma that was experienced by individuals coming from the 100s of 1000s of Kashmiri Hindu families who were the victims
5) The next project on this topic should be a web series that can cover many more stories of the horrors experienced by Kashmiri Hindus. There are many in Australia, including me, who would be willing to fund such a project.
6) Pockets of anti-Hindu violence have flared in states like Bengal, Punjab & Kerala from time to time. Absent a strong Central & State govt, it is only a matter of time before another Kashmir erupts in Bharat.
7) There is no justifiable reason, other than political expediency, why the current Indian govt cannot set up an Enquiry to investigate the Kashmir Genocide.
Another viewer said:
One viewer decided to change her social media profile to
Sydney's Maureen Kasturi Singh said:
It was really sad to see the torture the vulnerable people went through. Plus giving us knowledge on Kashmir and the suffering of its people. Was very emotional. Hats off to the producer and director. Highly recommend people to take time out to see it. 🙏
@nriherald recorded reactions of Sydney viewers:
After watching the Parramatta premier, Yogesh Khattar commented
While some dug out these pictures of Bitta Karate (Farooq Ahmed Dar)