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Queer Films from India PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 26 April 2011 15:46


KASHISH 2010 has till date screened at 12 film festivals around the world:

Iris Prize (UK)

Q Film Festival (Indonesia)

Hong Kong LGFF (Hong Kong)

Reel Out (Canada)

Qfest (Pune, India)

Translations (Seattle, USA)

Transcreen (Amsterdam)

Kalakranti (Chicago, USA)

Anarchopride (Sweden)

Entzaubert DIY festival (Germany)

Beijing Queer Film Festival (China)

Chicago South Asian Film Festival (USA) 





One of the missions of the festival was to discover small budget independent films, short films, documentaries and student films from India with a queer focus and provide them with a platform to reach wider audiences. The festival showcased 20 Indian films, second highest from any country at the festival.

KASHISH SHORTS is a specially curated package of 8 Indian queer short films which were screened at KASHISH 2010. This package of four documentary short and four fiction shorts showcase the diversity of Indian queer experience and expression in contemporary times.

We hope that these films that explore the diverse realities, deep complexities, joys and sorrows of the Indian queer experience will celebrate, reclaim, explain, and entertain audiences across the world. 


Terms and Conditions

  1. The films in this specially curated package were screened at KASHISH 2010, some of them are award winners at KASHISH 2010.
  2. This package is offered to international film festivals for programming, with the title – KASHISH SHORTS 2010 ~ Queer Films from India.
  3. This package is primarily offered to promote Indian queer shorts across international festival platform. It also aims to assist young filmmakers in India who do not have resources to send their films individually to film festivals.
  4. Requisite permission has already been sought from individual filmmakers who have given written consent for inclusion of their films in this package.
All queries must be addressed to Sridhar Rangayan, Festival Director at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it




Director: Shruti Rao

India / 2010 / 26 min / in English, Hindi with English subtitles / Documentary



A student documentary exploring the lives of four gay men in urban Mumbai, the film follows lives of a young gay activist, an Haute Couture designer, a music composer and an NGO employee in their spaces along with their families and the loved ones. Their stories paint a textured tapestry of the contemporary urban gay landscape of Mumbai, weaving together various class, culture and social backdrops.




Directors: Sushmit Ghosh, Rintu Thomas, Sumit Sharma & Ajeeta Chowhan

India / 2008 / 36 min / in English / Documentary

A film that explores how the form of the body can become a powerful physical language to express dissent over societal norms and conventions. It profiles veteran photographer Sunil Gupta, who has fearlessly announced that he is gay and HIV positive. and has used his art to challenge the stereotypes that define one's body, sexuality and identity. Gupta has spent over 20 years compiling the first photographic chronicle of the gay community in India, while at the same time, exploring his own relationship with his country of origin. The film's lyrical style marries still photography with moving images and text, to unfold an intensely personal narrative that questions the deeply engrained prejudices that we all carry within ourselves.

KASHISH Winner: Special Jury Award




Director: Deepika Lal

India / 2010 / 26 min / in English with English subtitles / Documentary



Speak Up! It is not your fault' is a documentary dealing with the issue of child sexual abuse with the stories of two survivors who have chosen to Speak Up! about it. It also talks about the lack of vocabulary among the society to deal with the issue. With a lacuna in the laws, NGO's and individuals are working towards creating awareness among parents and society to teach their children the right vocabulary and the inevitable need to trust the child.


KASHISH Winner: Special Jury Award for Student Film




Dir: Dr.Bharathy Manjula

India / 2008 / 48 min / Malayalam with English subtitles / Documentary



The film XXWHY on Sree Nandu, an F2M transgender from Kerala, India, poses many uncomfortable issues that question the notions of social positionalities and fixed gender identities. Twenty five year old Sree Nandu is the first in Kerala to come in public with transgender identity. Suffering and redemption, destruction and self destruction, love and hatred, pain and joy all go entwined and entangled in Sree Nandu, while the under current is accumulating trauma and the determination to survive in a society where transgenders are still invisible and inaudible.


KASHISH Winner: Best Documentary Short




ASTITVA (Existence)

Director: Kiran Pawar

India / 2008 / 4 min / in Hindi with English subtitles / Fiction



Journey of a person who is born with masculine body but feminine feelings... This short film portrays society's attitude towards a gender non-conformist and his struggle to find a place under the sun for his existence. What does it mean to be a ‘hijra’?




Dir: Suresh Shelar

India / 2009 / 11 min / in Hindi with English subtitles / Fiction

Abhay has the habit the remembering birthdays of all the people he knows. Today is his friend  Alex’s birthday. Abhay bonds with Alex on physical and mental levels, but does Alex reciprocate fully? ”Birthday” portrays a day in the life of Abhay, going through several emotions – love, hope and disillusionment.




Director: Kenneth Lawrence

India / 2009 / 21 min / in Hindi with English subtitles / Fiction



It is a story about life and filling the missing blanks. Ronnie, whose father makes life hard for him, craves for a father figure until one day, he meets a fisherman who deeply craves for his long lost son. An unusual story of friendship and bonding.




Director: Prasanth Kanathur

India / 2008 / 25 min / in Malayalam & Tamil with English subtitles/ Fiction

A journey into the world of a transgender, who lived for colors, her only love. Though strangers always stole the colors of her life, she kept her first love by working with paint and brush to convert her thoughts to colorful images. Rejected by family, dejected over the society around her, she tries to keep her love alive. But how long can she hang on to her love for colors?   
Films from the KASHISH SHORTS 2010 collection has played at the following film festivals:
Chicago South Asian Film Festival
Beijing Queer Film Festival 
Anarchopride Sweden
Entzaubert DIY Festival, Germany 
KalaKranti 2011  
Pune QFest, India 
Last Updated on Monday, 05 September 2011 11:57