“If something hasn’t been attempted, it doesn’t mean you cannot do it. To me, Azadi means facing a raging fire,” says Harshini Kanheker, India’s first female firefighter, at the release of Azadi Ki Amrit Kahaniyan, a series of short films featuring women change-makers like her from across the country.
“From water comes life, and water is life. I flow free like a river, and will continue to protect and serve water, that’s Azadi to me,” adds environmentalist Basanti Devi, known as the protector of the Kosi river ecosystem, who also features in the series. Netflix and the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting have come together to honour extraordinary individuals through a series of inspiring short videos titled Azadi Ki Amrit Kahaniyan. This was launched in Delhi on Tuesday, in the presence of I&B Minister Anurag Thakur, MoS, I&B, L Murugan, and Head of Global TV, Netflix, Bela Bajaria.
“Netflix will be producing 25 videos on themes including women empowerment, environment and sustainable development and other days of significance. Netflix will produce two-minute short films for the Ministry which will be shared on social media platforms and telecast on Doordarshan network,” Thakur said.
He added, “Netflix and the ministry will partner to develop a creative ecosystem by organising training programmes for post-production, VFX, animation and music production, among others, to be organised physically as well as virtually.” He said this partnership was only a beginning and will not be limited to Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav. The first set of videos feature seven women change-makers from across the country who share their experiences in breaking the glass ceiling. They are demonstrated as ‘forces of nature’ as they speak about what azadi means to them. The short videos are narrated by actor Neena Gupta.
These also include mountaineer Anshu Jamsenpa, who is the first woman in the world to scale the summit of Mount Everest twice in a season; Poonam Nautiyal, a healthcare worker who walked miles across Bageshwar district in Uttarakhand to vaccinate everyone; Tessy Thomas, the first woman scientist to head a missile project in India; Tanvi Jagadish, India’s first competitive woman stand-up paddleboarder and Aarohi Pandit, the world’s youngest and first woman pilot to cross the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean solo in a light-sport aircraft.
Bajaria said, “Great stories can come from anywhere and are ever so inspiring when they are about people who rise against the odds. Netflix is excited to be part of a time when stories from India are being exported to the world and the best Indian stories are being discovered and loved on a global stage.”
The videos are now available on the Ministry’s social media platforms and Doordarshan. They will also soon be made available in other languages like Gujarati, Marathi, Bengali, Tamil, English and Malayalam.