Sunday, November 30, 2014

Beyond Boundaries: Heenakshi Malhotra

In an era full of communal rebuttals and inter-religious disharmonies , these five couples made the hard decision to accept each other and adamantly tie the knots. They opposed popular belief that that inter religious marriages should be non existent and refuted an already irascible narrow minded society.
Beyond Boundaries , a film by mentor and friend, Gaurang Raval drew me closer to the idea that when two people marry , they marry each other and not their Gods.
Ask yourself this simple question-
Would you marry someone who is smart, understanding and compatible or someone who worships the same god as you?
A mentality disregarded as merely anachronistic by most Western people is still sadly prevalent in our country (and the world). Talking on a personal note , even I have had my days where I was counseled by sanctimonious know-it-all preachers against who to marry and who not to marry. I would also blatantly like to admit that my own parents have had concerns regarding this, leaving my own rationality entirely rescind.This film talks not about how society admonished such couples or how they faced a vicious personal diatribe but focuses on a respectful discussion of issues.It has greatly impacted my sense of thinking on this subject and I strongly recommend every young and old person to watch this film.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Beyond Boundaries: Chaitri Vasavada

The first film screening by Sauhard- proud, excited, nervous all at the same time the movie, Beyond Boundaries, basically talks about those people who overlooked all boundaries to follow their heart, they did not let their religion take over their power of love. 
Being a simple human being, often questions regarding religious acceptability arise when it comes to marrying someone outside your religion. Even today when people say they've progressed  and  accepted new cultures and traditions, in the back of their minds, they still fear if there is someone in their family who wants to have an inter-caste/inter-religion marriage.  Through this film, Sauhard has portrayed love stories of five such couples, who fell in love with someone outside their religion and have successfully taken their relationship to another level. Although they had to pass through many obstacles, they did not lose hope. They convinced the world, the people around them who were always against their marriage and had doubts and questions regarding their relationship. The couple talked about how they have successfully passed through obstacles like riots, bomb blasts, where religion played an important role. They supported each other, helped one another instead of blaming their communities, at that particular point of time. This is something that made me respect them. This film teaches us to remove the religious differences and accept the world as a family. No religion is good or bad. Love has the power to overcome all obstacles.. you just have to have faith. The story has also inspired us to think in a different direction, inspired us to follow our heart and believe in it. Those five couples taught us how easy it is for us to bring the change that is required in today’s world, also, accept the change, together. Dealing with problems, together. Facing the world, together. This film has thus, taught us many things that can change our perception and beliefs in many ways and it also proves that ‘love’ is the strongest of all the feelings.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Beyond Boundaries- A Film of Roses: Mehreen Quadri

If Love was not allowed to be left to blossom, this film by Gaurang Raval would not have been made. I understood that love needs no language, age, religion, status, background. This film took my understanding to a greater and broader level.
I was never a part of the immediate preparations of the movie. For me, the movie was a delightful surprise! Sitting in the audience, I could feel the love which was expressed by each couple in the film. The reason may also be that watching the smiling faces of the couples present in the audience I felt the essence of the movie.

The most beautiful line for me was what Neha Desai (youngest couple) said “After the marriage, I never had shocks. There were just happy surprises. One was, his mother is now my mother.” For me, acceptance is an important aspect in a marriage. By watching the movie, I felt that acceptance will be there at some point of time what is required is time and patience. 
The eldest couple  touched my heart the most, they were the youngest by heart, Nafisa and Rajoo Barot. They had to wait for more than a decade to give an acceptable name to their love courtship. After 33 years of their marriage, those 11 years seem to just fade away. Love is alive in their hearts, strong as ever.
I believe that the movie just showed Roses and not thorns which cling to an “Inter-caste” marriage. But this gave out a very strong message that there are some couples, who despite  all the sufferings, are eventually happy and content with their lives. The discussion in the end of the movie raised a few questions in my midn, but the couples confidently and positively answered them. Many messages were given by the couples, but the one which moved me was “Due to such marriages, Love grows between the partners and also lead to communal Harmony which is highly necessary at the societal level”

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Beyond religions and with love: Anushka Gupta

On Saturday, 21 November, 2014,  Sauhard launched a film "Beyond Boundaries" which was screened at Gujarat Vidhyapith. The film was basically about 5 couples who were from different religions and got married.

Inter religion marriages have been talked about quite often in our country. But according to me this film did miracles in depicting what people who fall in love with someone who  is not from the same religion feel. It came directly from the mouths of the original couples and that's what gave it its unique value. It was sweet and romantic. It was also entertaining because it contained not one but five great love stories. Also seeing the couples present at the premier instilled a sense of respect and made emotions flow through me. They shared experiences beyond the movie and these were enough to prove their greatness and the sanctity of their love for each other.
This film was definitely an emotional ride for me. It taught me how religion and love should be kept separate and how people with different religious identities can still become one soul and be happy. It taught me about how if ones love is strong enough the world cannot stop them from being together.
Personally I feel more  can be done with this film. It can be converted into a whole 3 hour movie with more experiences of the couples. In fact all of the country should be given the opportunity to admire this masterpiece. Beyond boundaries is definitely a movie which has developed a new religion, 'LOVE' and this religion is the greatest of all other religions.

Breaking Boundaries: Shalkie Kumar

Love isn’t only for poets to fathom nor is it only to be cherished young, immeasurable and incorrigible; it cannot be contained within boundaries. An affair of two, an affair between two, but unfortunately it isn't as idealistic as it sounds especially when your envisioned better half has a different God than yours.It is shameful when concepts like ‘Love Jihad’ brim in a country such as India, which glorify diversity. 

Not only it is hypocritical but also gives an outreached evidence of how religion as a tool is capable of enslaving and dividing people. In the 21st century living in a democratic country, we should be rational enough to not include religion in something as beautiful as falling in love. Why run from emotions and feelings only because he/she reads Quran, Geeta, Bible or anything else for that matter? Why cannot we keep the religion aside and judge the person and his/her family for who they are? Why do we let other personalities interfere and flare doubts in our judgments? And most importantly why have we made religion an epicenter of our decisions? It is not even the head ruling the heart, in fact it is a set of beliefs ruling everything (Doesn't sound rational to me!).So what happened when one fine day, in a random meeting, Gaurang Bhai announced his plan to make a movie on the same idea? Clue: It made us admire him more.  So Beyond Boundaries is a short documentary film coming from the efforts of people who were cognizant and insights and contributions from the people who made this cognizance possible. The twist is that it doesn't talk about the hardships of the interfaith couples instead it plans to leave a smile on your face rather than dewy tears.  It celebrates the lives of five couples from Ahmedabad, whose lives like the city itself, is a beautiful confluence of two cultures. For some friendship blossomed into love, some tested the cruel incomings of time and emerged winners, for some celebrating the festivals of both religions was an untamed joy, for some perceptions were changed for better and some received the consent for the marriage from the family member after judging her ability to sway through the traffic. These are the stories that encapsulate the simplicity and liberalness of the closest and purest of associations, marriage.So with all the respect and gratitude, I congratulate all the couples who have dared or are daring to live life on their terms and also all the families who have supported them in their decisions. And of course to all the mediums and popular culture that have recognized, accepted and celebrated not only lives but a certain revolution.