@ Afaq Khan Sameer | Correspondent
The first-ever Film Festival Kenya was inaugurated in a grand ceremony in Nairobi coinciding with Indian Independence Day by the Indian High Commissioner Rahul Chhabra. Awardees included popular actor Arjun Rampal & top filmmakers Raju Chadha, Rahul Mittra & Umesh Shukla and Dharmindra Mehra and Ajay Arora.
Minister for Information, Communication & Technology Joe Mucheru pledged to review the decades’ old Films and Stage Plays Act to make it friendlier to movie makers and said that the government would line up tax holiday and rebates to lure Indian movie makers to invest in Kenya. “Kenya receives more than 120,000 Indian tourists every year. Kenyans come to India in large numbers as well,” said the High Commissioner, noting that the film festival would also boost tourism and trade between the two countries. The five days Indian Film Festival Kenya 2019 was curated by Captain Rahul Sudesh Bali and organized by The Indian Film Festival Worldwide (IFFW) under the aegis of the High Commission of India in Kenya and supported by Kenya Film Commission & Sarova Hotels & Resorts.
The Bollywood celebrities were also taken to spectacular locations including the breathtaking Masai Mara & Mombassa, apart from hosting a round table conference along with top Kenyan filmmakers & government functionaries. Also present were Cricketing legend Aasif Karim, CFO Safaricom Sateesh Kamath, Chairman of Kenya Tourism Jimmi Kariuki, CEO of Kenya Film Commission Timothy Owase & Rajay Singh of Safari Trails