Wednesday, August 1, 2012

‘Gorkhaland: Crisis of Statehood’ by Romit Bagchi

Black Darjeeling
"Eulogising darkness in his typical mystic phrase, T. S. Eliot wrote, 'I said to my soul, be still, and let the dark come upon you, which shall be the darkness of God… So the darkness shall be the light and the stillness, the dancing.''
"However, the residents of Darjeeling have since long ceased to be mystified by these profound poetical outpourings swelling from a deeply philosophical soul. They are now resolved to wage a crusade instead against what they call primordial darkness enveloping in a timeless stagnancy the vegetating life of the town epitomised in the queer-sounding phrase 'Black Darjeeling.''
"'Black Darjeeling' is the theme coined for a film festival organised by the mass communication department of St Joseph's College, Darjeeling. The students presented the darker stories from Darjeeling from the perspective of a critical observer in the form of ten short films. Each individually deals with a particular issue, one blow at a time in a ruthless swipe.'
"According to Vikram Rai, a lecturer of the college and one of the principal organisers of the film festival 'with a difference,' the topics range from the terminally ailing Cinchona plantations, the voiceless wailing of old age to the withering of the vulnerable youth wallowing in the marshy quagmire of alcoholism and prostitution."
(p. 293, 'Gorkhaland: Crisis of Statehood' by Romit Bagchi – Sage)

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