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Burning Memories| 45mins
Director: Someetharan | Producer: someetharan nihari production
Focus Years: 2008 | Country: India
Subject Tags: asia, conflict
Quality Tags: Optimistic, Slow, Activating, Harmonizing
One of the most traumatic events of the early stages of the civil war in Sri Lanka that has been raging for more than 25 years is the burning of Jaffna Public Library, which housed more than 97,000 books and irreplaceable palm leaf manuscripts, the wanton burning of the most important library of the Tamils was a major loss to the cultural heritage. This documentary attempts to document war scarred life of the Library and the socio-political violence connected with it. The Jaffna Public Library was the major repository of literary source materials of the Tamil people and Tamil language. By 1981, it had over 97,000 books and rare, old manuscripts and papers.. It was a place of historic and symbolic importance to the local minority Sri Lankan Tamil people. In 1981, when, Sinhalese policemen and government sponsored thugs set fire to the Jaffna Public Library thus destroying it completely. The film narrates the entire history of the library since its inception in 1933 by juxtaposing voiceover and interviews of the former employees of the library. The interviews of the people who had benefited from the library are heart-rending. Mr Sabaratnam, who had been the member of the library since 1948.The archival video footage (1981) of the interview of Mr Rasa Viswanathan, the then Mayor of Jaffna, recollects the entire incident including the involvement of armed constabulary in the devastation. This documentary film focus the cultural tragedy during the ethnic strife in Sri Lanka.
Burning Memories | 45mins

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