NFAI discovers 30 reels of unedited footage on Mahatma Gandhi

The National Film Archive of India, NFAI has discovered 30 reels of unedited footage on Mahatma Gandhi that amounts to almost six hours of duration.

An official release said, these 35 mm celluloid footages, unedited and stock shots with title cards in between, are taken by several prominent film studios of the time such as Paramount, Pathe, Warner, Universal, British Movietone and Wadia Movietone.

Director NFAI, Prakash Magdum said, it is a very wonderful discovery for NFAI, coming at a time when the world is celebrating the 150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. He said, there seem to be some rare footages in this collection.

Our correspondent reports the major highlight of the discovery is rare half-an-hour footage that has visuals of a special train carrying Mahatma Gandhi’s ashes from Madras to Rameshwaram.

The stunning visuals show thousands of people thronging to stations like Chettinad, Sivaganga, Chidambaram, Manamadurai junction, Ramnad and Pudukkottai junctions in Tamil Nadu, with folded hands and tears in eyes to have a glimpse of the urn carrying the Mahatma’s ashes.

The collection has a reel that showcases Mahatma and Kasturba engaged in various activities at Sevagram Ashram in Wardha, Maharashtra.

There are visuals of Mahatma keenly taking part in tree plantation, serving the patients and ploughing the field with a machine. An endearing visual shows Kasturba feeding a cow in the Ashram.