Panaji: The first edition of 'Goa Environmental Film Festival' (GEFF) kicked off on Saturday with the Oscar winning documentary 'The Elephant Whisperers'.
The three-day film festival which highlights global issues related to the environment, was inaugurated by state Environment Minister Nilesh Cabral.
Secretary (Protocol) and Nodal Officer of G20 (Goa) Sanjit Rodrigues and Chairman of Goa State Pollution Control Board Mahesh Patil were present on the occasion.
Speaking at the inaugural of the Environmental Film Festival, Nilesh Cabral said that 50 films will be screened in the film festival. "Everyone should try to protect the environment. I hope we will make efforts in this regard," he said.
He said that GEFF has been organised on the sidelines of G20 meetings taking place in Goa, however, it will be an annual event from this year.
Cabral informed that films from Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Finland, Ireland, Oman, Portugal, Russia, Spain and other countries will be screened during the film festival.
He said that various aspects of protecting the environment could be learnt by watching these films. "Hence I appeal to the student community and general public to watch these films by participating in film festival," he said.
Sanjit Rodrigues said, "I think environment is a very dear subject and a very touchy subject too. As we are working with such a fervour towards nine meetings of G20 in Goa, we thought that there should be a connection with the local population here and thus the film festival idea was put forward which unites people here."
He further said that such films show what is happening across countries with issues related to the environment and how these countries tackle them.
"Film is a great medium to bring such awareness to our level, and is a medium which is acceptable to all. And at the same time we have brought in the local Goan perspective at this film festival. It will help us see how we fare in this medium. I'm happy that the response towards this festival has been overwhelming," Rodrigues said. —IANS