DSF documentary complete, with subtitles

Aur Nikele.nge Ushhaq ke Qafilay (And there shall be more caravans of passion – Faiz), 30 min, produced by Beena Sarwar, directed by Sharjil Baloch.

Finally managed to update our documentary on the Democratic Students Federation with new visuals (thanks to the talented and committed K.B. Abro) and subtitles in English. We are grateful to all those who supported the making of this 30-minute archival film, including old stalwarts of DSF who shared their insights, experiences and memories, especially S.M. Naseem whose valuable archives of the Students’ Herald provided the basis of much of the research, and Dr Haroon Ahmed, Mazhar Saeed, Saleem Asmi, Iqbal Alavi, Shahida Haroon, Mazhar Jameel, Mirza Mohammad Kazim who also participated in the film. Zehra Nigah and Nauser Messman who as young students were not part of the movement but still vividly remember and shared their impressions of the events that shook the nation.

In recent weeks we have showed the documentary at Kuch Khaas in Islamabad and at The Second Floor in Karachi. Various people would like copies to show at different events, including Jan 8 commemorations coming up in Karachi and perhaps also Islamabad. We’ll be happy to share the documentary with them.

What always crops up during discussions of DSF is the point made in the documentary that DSF kept the student movement independent of Communist Party politics although many were members and sympathisers. As Iqbal Alavi explained after the showing at T2F yesterday, this allowed them to build a broad base that even included Muslim League, Jamat-e-Islami and Islami Jamiat-e-Tulaba affiliated students – even though the agenda and the ideology were clearly CPP, as Sheema Kermani rightly commented later.

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