Shivendra Singh Dungarpur.
Shivendra Singh Dungarpur.

Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, Bollywood's restoration man



The only surviving original print of the acclaimed 1948 Hindi classic Kalpana, a masterpiece by the director Uday Shankar, would not have existed if not for the relentless efforts and patience of Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, an advertising director with an uncommon penchant for preserving films for posterity.

Dungarpur, along with Martin Scorsese's World Cinema Foundation, helped restore the old film for more than six months at the Immagine Ritrovata laboratory in Bologna. The restored work was screened at this year's Cannes Film Festival, in its Classic section. The film, which critics and historians consider to be an ode to experimental cinema and dance choreography, is now back in India, stored at the National Film Archives of India (NFAI).

"I had seen Kalpana some time ago and it was a great film. When I met Scorsese's people, they said they wanted to do it but because of bureaucracy, they gave up," says the 43-year-old. Dungarpur says it took him three months just to have the project approved in India and acquire the film's release so he could send the copy to the Foundation.

The other film that Dungarpur partly sponsored to restore is Alfred Hitchcock's first film, the 1927 silent cinema classic The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog. The movie recently screened at the Barbican Centre in London as a prelude to this year's Olympics and was telecast on UK television and the web.

Dungarpur, who hails from a royal family and originally set out to make feature films in Bollywood, says restoring the Kalpana print was all thanks to PK Nair, the founding director of the NFAI and the one who had the foresight to make a backup print of Kalpana.

"All the filmmakers believe we learnt everything from Nair, who preserved every bit of cinema left in India," he says. "He showed us everything, gave us our identity. In 1964, he started the NFAI, and whatever is there, it is because of him. He is the gatekeeper of Indian film heritage."

Out of 1,700 Indian silent films, only nine have survived and all through Nair's efforts.

This year, Dungarpur released his documentary on Nair and the man's work and restoration legacy. The film, Celluloid Man, premiered at the Cinema Ritrovato Festival in Bologna in June.

"It took 11 trips to the National Film Archive's headquarters in Pune to convince the authorities to let me film with Nair," recalls Dungarpur.

"I started the film two years ago and what a journey of discovery it has been. I learnt about the lost heritage of Indian cinema and how important it is to preserve and restore our films before it is too late."

Dungarpur says that when he was a student at the Film and Television Institute of India, a school that works closely with the National Film Archive, he would see Nair in the institute's cinema: "A shadowy figure in the darkened theatre, scribbling industriously in a notebook by the light of a tiny torch - winding and unwinding reels of film, shouting instructions to the projectionist and always, always watching the films."

In a country where historical monuments are being razed to make way for infrastructure projects, where ancient manuscripts are withering away in neglected corners and languages are fading, picking up the gauntlet as a saviour of old film prints is a brave act. The sheer trouble and time it takes to even secure access to archival material is enough to turn anyone off.

Dungarpur recognises these challenges, but remains focused on his plans to formally set up a foundation, by the end of the year, that will focus on restoring and preserving films in India.

"We make films, exploit them commercially and throw them out. We don't have training or schools focused on restoration," he says. "Look at Chaplin films and how well preserved they are. Can you say that for India?"

Forced Deportations

While the Lebanese government has deported a number of refugees back to Syria since 2011, the latest round is the first en-mass campaign of its kind, say the Access Center for Human Rights, a non-governmental organization which monitors the conditions of Syrian refugees in Lebanon.

“In the past, the Lebanese General Security was responsible for the forced deportation operations of refugees, after forcing them to sign papers stating that they wished to return to Syria of their own free will. Now, the Lebanese army, specifically military intelligence, is responsible for the security operation,” said Mohammad Hasan, head of ACHR.
In just the first four months of 2023 the number of forced deportations is nearly double that of the entirety of 2022.

Since the beginning of 2023, ACHR has reported 407 forced deportations – 200 of which occurred in April alone.

In comparison, just 154 people were forcfully deported in 2022.

Violence

Instances of violence against Syrian refugees are not uncommon.

Just last month, security camera footage of men violently attacking and stabbing an employee at a mini-market went viral. The store’s employees had engaged in a verbal altercation with the men who had come to enforce an order to shutter shops, following the announcement of a municipal curfew for Syrian refugees.
“They thought they were Syrian,” said the mayor of the Nahr el Bared municipality, Charbel Bou Raad, of the attackers.
It later emerged the beaten employees were Lebanese. But the video was an exemplary instance of violence at a time when anti-Syrian rhetoric is particularly heated as Lebanese politicians call for the return of Syrian refugees to Syria.

Company profile

Name: Maly Tech
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Based: Dubai International Financial Centre
Sector: FinTech
Funds raised: $1.6 million
Current number of staff: 15
Investment stage: Pre-seed, planning first seed round
Investors: GCC-based angel investors

Company Profile

Company name: Namara
Started: June 2022
Founder: Mohammed Alnamara
Based: Dubai
Sector: Microfinance
Current number of staff: 16
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Family offices

The specs

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MATCH INFO

Manchester United 1 (Rashford 36')

Liverpool 1 (Lallana 84')

Man of the match: Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)

Common OCD symptoms and how they manifest

Checking: the obsession or thoughts focus on some harm coming from things not being as they should, which usually centre around the theme of safety. For example, the obsession is “the building will burn down”, therefore the compulsion is checking that the oven is switched off.

Contamination: the obsession is focused on the presence of germs, dirt or harmful bacteria and how this will impact the person and/or their loved ones. For example, the obsession is “the floor is dirty; me and my family will get sick and die”, the compulsion is repetitive cleaning.

Orderliness: the obsession is a fear of sitting with uncomfortable feelings, or to prevent harm coming to oneself or others. Objectively there appears to be no logical link between the obsession and compulsion. For example,” I won’t feel right if the jars aren’t lined up” or “harm will come to my family if I don’t line up all the jars”, so the compulsion is therefore lining up the jars.

Intrusive thoughts: the intrusive thought is usually highly distressing and repetitive. Common examples may include thoughts of perpetrating violence towards others, harming others, or questions over one’s character or deeds, usually in conflict with the person’s true values. An example would be: “I think I might hurt my family”, which in turn leads to the compulsion of avoiding social gatherings.

Hoarding: the intrusive thought is the overvaluing of objects or possessions, while the compulsion is stashing or hoarding these items and refusing to let them go. For example, “this newspaper may come in useful one day”, therefore, the compulsion is hoarding newspapers instead of discarding them the next day.

Source: Dr Robert Chandler, clinical psychologist at Lighthouse Arabia

Indoor cricket in a nutshell

Indoor Cricket World Cup – Sep 16-20, Insportz, Dubai

16 Indoor cricket matches are 16 overs per side

8 There are eight players per team

9 There have been nine Indoor Cricket World Cups for men. Australia have won every one.

5 Five runs are deducted from the score when a wickets falls

4 Batsmen bat in pairs, facing four overs per partnership

Scoring In indoor cricket, runs are scored by way of both physical and bonus runs. Physical runs are scored by both batsmen completing a run from one crease to the other. Bonus runs are scored when the ball hits a net in different zones, but only when at least one physical run is score.

Zones

A Front net, behind the striker and wicketkeeper: 0 runs

B Side nets, between the striker and halfway down the pitch: 1 run

C Side nets between halfway and the bowlers end: 2 runs

D Back net: 4 runs on the bounce, 6 runs on the full

A cryptocurrency primer for beginners

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