Kolkata, Oct 10  The West Bengal government has earmarked a budget of Rs 15.75 crore for 28th edition of the Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) scheduled in December, surpassing all records in expenditure allocation for this annual event.

The seven-day event is slated from December 15 to December 22, while December 15 will be the day of the inauguration. Of the Rs 15.75 crore, sources from the state Information and Cultural Affairs Department said that over Rs 1.20 crore has been scheduled for the gala inauguration event on December 15.

A Ddpartment official said that in the last two years the event was a toned-down affair because of the Covid-19 pandemic fear. “So, this year the Chief
The KIFF started in 1995 during the then Left Front regime when Marxist patriarch, Jyoti Basu was the Chief Minister. However, at that point of time, the event had an attraction mainly towards the intellectual film buffs who had inclinations for parallel movies rather than mainstream cinema.

Kolkata International Film Festival . (Credit : kiff)

The entire event, including the inauguration ceremony at Kolkata’s cultural hub of Nandan was a low-key affair, with the budget behind the expenditure hardly crossing even Rs 50 lakh ever during the Left Front regime.

However, after the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress government came to power in May 2011, the event was given a different shape and look and was also opened for the masses. The venue of the inauguration ceremony was shifted from Nandan to Netaji Indoor Stadium to accommodate a larger audience.

Megastars and superstars from Bollywood like Amitav Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan among others became faces of the inauguration ceremony and gala cultural events had always been part of the inauguration ceremony since then. Naturally, in lines of the changed face of the event the expenditure behind it also increased over the years to reach this year’s budgeted figure of around Rs 16 crore.

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