Stalin K

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Stalin K.
Stalin K.
Known forspearheading community media movements in India

Stalin K. is an Indian documentary filmmaker, media and human rights activist. His films, Lesser Humans and India Untouched, on the issue of caste and untouchability in contemporary India, have galvanized international attention to caste discrimination and won numerous film awards.[1][2] He has done pioneering work on new models of community media to empower marginalized groups.


Stalin K. was born in Pune, and grew up in Gujarat. He studied Development Communication in Ahmedabad. Today he lives and works in Goa.

Community Media[edit]

Stalin K. co-founded Drishti Media Collective as a trust in 1993. The media and human rights organization is based in Ahmedabad, India. He was director of the organization until 2008[3]. His work involved training marginalized groups in participatory media techniques as well as producing and distributing community stories to give these communities a voice in the public sphere.[4] He is the President and co-founder of Community Radio Forum of India, an association of community radio broadcasters and advocates. Along with other founders of the Forum he drafted the new Community Radio Policy. The policy is in operation since 2006 and secures communities the right to own and run their own radio stations.[5][6][7] He set up one of the first community radio projects in Kutch, which covered stories from local communities.[8] In 2003 he co-founded Video Volunteers and co-conceived the Community Video Unit model in 2005.[citation needed] As managing trustee and director of Video Volunteers he is setting up media projects around the world to empower community voices, until he stepped down[9] from his role as Director of Video Volunteers on the 13th October due to allegations[10][11][12][13][14] of sexual misbehavior. In 2010 he launched the world’s first ever Community News Feature Service, IndiaUnheard.[15]

Campaigns and Events[edit]

Stalin K. designed more than 20 campaigns and events on various human rights issues including Cricket for Peace, Game4Change, Asia Social Forum and Making Caste Visible at UN World Conference Against Racism.[16][17][18]

Teaching and Workshops[edit]

As a visiting lecturer Stalin K. taught workshops on development communications and the use of media for empowerment at Universities and NGOs in India and the United States, like the Tata Institute of Social Sciences,[19] Centre for Development Communication [20] and Boston University.[21]

Films by Stalin K.[edit]

Stalin K. made documentaries on social and human rights issues, like the riots in Gujarat against minorities, gender based discrimination and rights of tribal people in India and America. He filmed the riots against Muslim minorities in Gujarat 2002. The footage was used in court to prove that high rank officials of the state were involved in the riots.[22][23] Stalin K. documented caste discrimination against the Dalit communities throughout India with his films IndiaUntouched and Lesser Humans. These films raised international attention to the discrimination of the Dalit communities in India. [24][25][26] [27]


  • 1992: 'Kali Kem Mari?/ Why Did Kali Die?', this film follows a social health worker dealing with the death of a village woman, Kali.[28]
  • 1992: 'A Bundleful of Fear/ Ek Poltlun Beek Nu', this is a dramatized narrative of 5 village women and their struggle for justice and gender equality.[29]
  • 1993: 'From Strength to Strength/ Basti se Basti tak', this is a film on the experiences of Shakti Mahila Sangathan, a women’s group working in an urban slum called Millatnagar in Ahmedabad.[30]
  • 1994: 'These Forests are Ours/ Jungle Amaru Tantra Tamaru', this film focuses on the violation of human rights of the tribals, their right over their forests and the importance of consolidation of land and resources in the hands of the communities.[31]
  • 1994:'Ta Talati No Ta', this film seeks to demystify for rural audiences the functions, powers and duties of a Talati-cum-mantri (Land Record Officer), who in many cases becomes a focal point of bureaucratic power and cause of distress to many.[32]
  • 1995: 'Kalavar Mat/Triumph Over Time', the film discusses the reconstruction choices available to the victims of an earthquake in Maharashtra 1994, through the plays and songs of a traveling folk theatre group.[33]
  • 1996: 'Gam Nathi Koi Paanch Nu/ The Self in Self-Rule', in the context of the 73rd Amendment, reserving 33% panchayat seats for women, this film explores through a dramatic narrative the moral and ethical dilemmas that face a conscientious woman sarpanch, as she begins to negotiate the male-dominated, corrupt and self-serving world of politics.[34]
  • 1998: 'Lesser Humans', this film investigates the lives of manual scavengers, whose inhuman caste-based occupation is to manually dispose off human excreta.[35][36]
  • 1999: 'Patta Patta Akshar Hoga/ Every Leaf A Letter', the film documents the emergence of ‘Jago Behna’ in Dumka Jharkhand – a rural women’s collective that was formed as result of the literacy campaign but went on to take up several other issues affecting their lives.[37]
  • 1999: 'Aftermath of the cyclone in Kutch', this film is a tool to draw attention and mobilize funds for rehabilitation, after a cyclone hit Kutch district of Gujarat in May 1999, for the second time in 2 years.[38]
  • 2002: 'Gujarat – A work in progress', the film unfolds the systematic violence on the minorities in Gujarat in 2002 with footage from the riots.[39]
  • 2005: `Our Water, Our Future', a film that documents how in tribes in Wyoming, US have been unable to exercise their basic rights.[40]
  • 2007: 'India Untouched: Stories of a People Apart', documents Untouchability all over India showing the gravity of discrimination against Dalits and critiques the justification of this systematic oppression by the caste-system.[41][42]

Awards and recognitions[edit]

2007 India Untouched:

  • Silver Dhow, Second-best Documentary, Zanzibar International Film Festival, Tanzania, July 2008[43]
  • Golden Conch, Best Documentary, Mumbai International Film Festival, February 2008
  • Best Film of the Festival, Mumbai International Film Festival, February 2008[44]
  • Best Documentary, Mahindra IAAC Film Festival, New York, November 2007[45]
  • Best Film, One Billion Eyes Film Festival, Chennai, India, August 2007[46]

1993 Lesser Human

  • Excellence Award, Earth Vision Film Festival, Tokyo, 1999[47]
  • Best Film, New Delhi Video Festival, 1999[48]
  • Silver Conch, 5th Mumbai International Film Festival, 1998 [49]
  • Special Mention, Amnesty International Film Festival, Amsterdam, 1998[50]


  1. ^ Screeing KPBS Public Broadcasting 21 April 2011.
  2. ^ [1] All India Christian Council 1 August 2008.
  3. ^ "Stalin K. | Video Volunteers". Video Volunteers. Retrieved 2018-10-30.
  4. ^ [2] TEDx gateway 20 November 2011.
  5. ^ [3] Community Radio India
  6. ^ [4] Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Policy Guidelines for setting up a Community Radio.
  7. ^ [5] Community Radio India
  8. ^ [6] BBC 'Radio raids' expose India's corrupt 29 September 2005.
  9. ^ "Video Volunteers". Retrieved 2018-10-30.
  10. ^ "#MeToo Allegations Hit Video Volunteers' Stalin K. Padma as Several Women Come Forward". The Wire. Retrieved 2018-10-30.
  11. ^ "Statement on Sexual Harassment Allegations Against Stalin K. Padma - WITNESS". WITNESS. 2018-10-19. Retrieved 2018-10-30.
  12. ^ "Three #MeToo cases tumble out in Ahmedabd". Ahmedabad Mirror. Retrieved 2018-10-30.
  13. ^ "Second wave of India's #MeToo: dark underbelly of our job sector exposed". Retrieved 2018-10-30.
  14. ^ Reporter, Staff (2018-10-11). "Allegations emerge against Suhel Seth, Aditi Mittal, Raghu Dixit". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 2018-10-30.
  15. ^ [7] unboxfestival 3 February 2012.
  16. ^ [8] TEDx gateway 20 November 2011.
  17. ^ [9] UN World Conference Against Racism 2001.
  18. ^ [10] IndiaTogether Ahmedabad, November 2000.
  19. ^ [11] Tata Institute of Social Sciences
  20. ^ [12] Centre for Development Communication
  21. ^ [13] Boston University
  22. ^ [14] unboxfestival 3 February 2012.
  23. ^ [15] Tehelka 17 November 2007.
  24. ^ Article atrocitynews 20 February 2008.
  25. ^ [16] BBC 'Radio raids' expose India's corrupt 29 September 2005.
  26. ^ [17] Tehelka 17 November 2007.
  27. ^ [18] Times of India 2 May 2010
  28. ^ [19] DrishtiMedia
  29. ^ [20] DrishtiMedia
  30. ^ [21] DrishtiMedia
  31. ^ [22] DrishtiMedia
  32. ^ [23] DrishtiMedia
  33. ^ [24] DrishtiMedia
  34. ^ [25] DrishtiMedia
  35. ^ [26] National Geographic
  36. ^ [27] AHRCHK
  37. ^ [28] DrishtiMedia
  38. ^ [29] DrishtiMedia
  39. ^ Article atrocitynews 20 February 2008.
  40. ^ [30]
  41. ^ [31] HinduTouching a raw nerve 16 July 2007
  42. ^ [32] SARAI15 February 2008
  43. ^ [33] All India Christian India Untouched' wins Silver Dhow at Zanzibar International Film Festival 1 August 2008
  44. ^ [34] MIFF
  45. ^ [35]KBPS Public Broadcasting
  46. ^ [36]
  47. ^ [37] Asian Human Rights Commission
  48. ^ [38]Friends Of South Asia (FOSA)
  49. ^ [39]Asian Human Rights Commission
  50. ^ [40] TEDx Gateway

External links[edit]