Qaida-e-Noor explores propagation of literacy through a cinematic … – Free Press Journal

Be it the role of a director, producer or an actor, camera keeps rolling in Dave Sidhu’s life. He dons many hats when it comes to his professional spell with movies, be in in front of camera or behind it.
Dave Sidhu, is an Indo-Australian film director and has various creative projects to his credit. Starting his career as a music director, Dave has made his mark as a director with his impeccable direction of movies like ‘Kuch Na Kuch’ and ‘Yaariyaan Dildaariyaan’.
Dave has been involved with acting and stage performances from a very young age. Mimicry, one act plays and theater has been a part of his life since childhood.
At the age of 7, Dave got a chance to visit the shooting sets of ‘Dillagi’ and looking at all those rolling cameras, the huge cast and crew behind the sets involved, sparked a desire in him to get involved with movies.
During his college days he was involved with Pukhraj Theatre and has worked alongside many fine theatre artists from Punjabi industry.
After coming to Australia Dave continued his passion and to further enhance his skills studied filmmaking at AFI, Australia. Recently he took over operations of Cinetown Organization, as a CEO as is gearing up to present first ever Cinetown Awards in Australia as a Festival Director in 2022.
With critically acclaimed films to his credit, Sidhu’s documentary “Qaida-E-Noor” is all set for its grand release later this year. This documentary is produced and directed by Dave Sidhu and co-produced by Billa Aulakh.
While talking about his documentary, Dave shares that the documentary reproduces ‘Sher-E-Punjab’- Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s efforts in education in the history of India.
Prominent artist of the industry Gurpreet Singh Ghuggi is playing vital role in the same. Addition to this, earlier this month the production of the documentary has been completed.
“The Indian Cinema has always carried an immense fascination with the nation’s history. This documentary is expected to reignite the dialogue on education in the Indian scenario, which has been time and again sparked by the Indian Cinema,” says Dave.
“Qaida refers to the unconventional method of learning from the 18th century. Focused on the mother tongue, this system of education was introduced by the 18th-century ruler, Maharaja Ranjit Singh. Historical shreds and evidence suggest that Maharaja Ranjit Singh had little education himself, but he carried great reverence for education,” he adds.
“The film sheds light on how the king prepared almost five-thousand books of Qaida to kick start his educational campaign. To maintain the tempo, all the heads of villages under his rule were made to read the books within three months. They were later on ordered to reproduce the manuscripts and pass them on to 5 other people in their respective villages. With such an approach, over the course of the next few years, a majority of the empire had become educated. The film explores such propagation of literacy through a cinematic lens,” adds Dave.
“It is worth noting that, during his entire campaign, the Qaida was made compulsory for women, which was the first time in the history of India when a male ruler advocated women’s education,” he adds.
Talking about the historical relevance of the documentary Dave says, “Directors and writers have always sought the most unique historical events that would connect with the Indian audience on a deeper level. Movies like Bajirao Mastani, Asoka, Padmaavat, Lagaan, and Jodha Akbar have been successful in their attempts to recreate history true to its events. Treading on a similar wire, Qaida-E-Noor, with a documentarian approach, aims to bring forth the progressive method of learning from the 18th century to the present times.”
Qaida-E-Noor carries a special significance to the city of Bhopal since a lot of its scenes were shot in the city of lakes. The technical and cinematic resources of Bhopal have also been hugely utilized by the filmmaker for Qaida-E-Noor.
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