About the film
What happens to people when they are violently displaced? Forced out of their home and ancestral village, buffeted by winds of hate, running for their lives, scattered like human debris in relief camps. Never able to return. How do they rebuild new homes and new lives, with hearts unable to leave the old one behind?
This film is about survivors of Muzaffarnagar, a town in north India, where targetted violence in 2013 forced over 60,000 people to flee their homes in fear. Many could never return. An estimated 60 people were killed, and 40 more died later in the relief camps - mostly children who perished from cold and sickness in a bitter winter.
The Colour of My Home is about rebuilding broken lives. It is about the scars that hate and violence leave on the human soul. It is about memory and loss. It is also about the spirit to survive
Violent winds of hate carrying human beings like so much debris - this is what is called internal displacement. A reality for hundreds and thousands across the globe, and for many Indians. These are the people the world calls IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) in dispassionate officialese.
What is lost when people attack you and your home, forcing you to flee? What is the human cost that violent displacement extracts for generations? When the media has left, and public attention gone, forgotten uprooted lives still need to be rebuilt. But can they? Be really rebuilt? What does ‘rehabilitation’ mean? A new roof over ones head? Or, monetary compensation given by the State? Is the home that was lost ever regained?
'The Colour of My Home' follows a group of people, violently displaced after ‘riots’ in the North Indian town of Muzaffarnagar in 2013, seeking answers to these questions.
Sanjay Barnela, based in India, is founder of Moving Images, a team of documentary filmmakers and academics, making a range of award winning films over the last twenty years, many in the niche area of conservation and livelihoods, at the political interface between the environment and local communities. His body of work was recognized by the CMS VATAVARAN Prithvi Ratna Award (2014). In 2012, Sanjay joined the Srishti Institute of Art, Design & Technology in Bangalore, where he heads Srishti Films, a center dedicated to teaching professional non-fiction film making.