The Great Abandonment

    हुक्मरानों के एहसान

    • Shirley Abraham, Amit Madheshiya
    • India
    • 2021
    • 30 min
    • World Premiere
    • Frontlight

    Is it better to suffer the consequences of a lockdown or of Covid-19? That’s the harsh choice facing 11 million migrant workers in India when they have to leave their workplaces in the cities without warning. The country’s prime minister Narendra Modi sees a lockdown for India’s 1.3 billion inhabitants as a collective sacrifice that’s necessary to combat the spread of the virus, but his call to suffering only serves to outsource the miseries of the pandemic to the poorest of the poor.

    The lack of work means Anees and Afsanah’s family in Mumbai have to sleep on the street, where they’re constantly harassed by police. Elsewhere, for the last of the construction laborers who are continuing to work, the prospect of food or pay is uncertain. Trade union leaders leap on the opportunity to inspire a workers’ revolution, but the protests lead to nothing except further curbs on dissent.

    Dramatic and moving scenes from the city streets jostle with the belligerence of TV studios and Modi’s theatrical one-way broadcasts during the world’s toughest, biggest, and most unbearable lockdown.


    • 30 min
    • color
    • DCP
    • Spoken languages: Hindi, Marathi
    • Subtitles in: English
    Shirley Abraham, Amit Madheshiya
    Shirley Abraham for Cave Pictures, Amit Madheshiya for Cave Pictures
    Executive producer
    Lindsay Poulton for The Guardian, Laurence Topham for The Guardian
    Amit Madheshiya
    Amit Madheshiya, Shirley Abraham

    IDFA history

    World Premiere

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    IDFA history

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