Film ‘31st October’ screened as a special Tribute to the people who lost their lives in 1984 Anti-Sikh riots
Award-winning mainstream film 31st October set on the backdrop of one of the most fateful days in Indian history has made its mark across the globe. Writer-Producer Harry Sachdeva along with Young Progressive Sikh Forum, decided to pay his tributes to the many who lost their lives, by holding a special screening of his film at Mohali, Chandigarh.
The special screening was attended by prominent Sikhs and influential personalities of Chandigarh, and a special tribute was also paid by Mr Harry Sachdeva, Writer & Producer of film; Dr. Rajinder Chadha (Raju Chdha), Chairman, Wave Group: Dr. SP Singh Oberoi, Managing Trustee Sarbat Da Bhala Charitable Trust and Dr. Prabhleen Singh, President, Young Progressive Sikh Forum.
At the special screening writer-producer Harry Sachdeva said, “The unfortunate chain of events that began on 31st October 1984, affected and impacted my life deeply which inculcated into the idea of this film. The scars of riots are still open and I see my movie as a humble tribute to those hapless and helpless Sikhs killed in the riots. As someone who has experienced the horrendous tragedy first hand, I have pledged to stand against violence happening to any person, in any corner of the world”.
He further added, “These days, one change the world by pressing a few keys on their smartphones. This time, pick your smartphone for a cause. Let’s pledge to stand against violence. Let’s pledge to stand against riots. Let’s stand together for peace.”
Present at the screening Dr. Rajinder Chadha (Raju Chdha) said he has himself witnessed the tragedy. He was stuck in his office on that horrific night and the memories still haunt him. Thanking Harry Sachdeva he further added, “This is the best tribute one can give”.
In 1984, the assassination of PM Indra Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards led to a series of organised pogroms in India that ravaged Sikh families across the nation. Within three days, the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, also known as the 1984 Sikh Massacre claimed 2800 lives and displaced some 20,000 people in Delhi only. 3,350 Sikh lost their lives across the nation as per the government figures, whilst 8,000–17,000 according to the independent sources.Today’s date mark 35 years of this massacre.
Homegrown filmmaker Harry grew up hearing the stories of the traumatic incident. He began writing at a very early age and decided to address the subject as a filmmaker and in the right manner. The film which was released in 2016 is the first mainstream Bollywood film to cover the subject. Owing to the subject based on a true-life story and being attempted for the very first time, the film was acknowledged at many national and international platforms, including premiers at London Indian Film Festival, Sikh International Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival and Vancouver International Film Festival.