Humaira Bilkis gives the viewers a glimpse into life and struggles of tea plantation workers in her latest directorial venture Garden of Memories.
The film was screened at the Goethe-Institut auditorium on Thursday under a film screening and discussion series titled ‘Through Her Eyes – A Space to Watch and Discuss Films with Women Filmmakers of Bangladesh’.
Goethe-Institut Bangladesh, in cooperation with the International Film Initiative of Bangladesh, has introduced the series with a view to promoting women filmmakers in the country.
Humaira brings to light everyday life of tea workers, their lack of opportunities, including absence of educational institutions and hospitals at tea gardens and more.
‘The tea industry is organised within the framework of the colonial rule and has remained unchanged till date. The labourers are subject to the panoptic surveillance of the master. No school has been established in the vicinity, although there are enough liquor stores that drain off the workers’ meager salary of a dollar per day. This is the key arrangement to which this community has succumbed over generations, never managing to escape the fate of a worker,’ Humaira writes in the director’s note.
The screening was attended by Goethe-Institut Bangladesh director Kirsten Hackenbroch, filmmaker Humaira Bilkis and others.
The programme was the fourth event organised as part of the film screening and discussion series. Following the screening, the viewers got the chance to interact directly with Humaira.
Dhaka based documentary filmmaker Humaira Bilkis has trained in creative documentary filmmaking from Sri Aurobindo Centre for Arts and Communication, Delhi. Her student films have been screened internationally.
She previously directed a short film ‘I am yet to see Delhi’ (2015) and has worked as an associate producer in ‘A Journey of a Thousand Miles: Peace Keepers’ (2015).