The three-day fest was inaugurated by His Eminence Drukpa Thuksey Rinpoche in presence of Bollywood filmmaker Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, veteran actress Deepti Naval, actor Rajit Kapur and director Amol Gupte, who was accompanied by his actor son Partho and wife. "Films had a very important role in my life. I left Ladakh at the age of two... when I cam back I did not know the Ladakhi language and culture. It was films that helped me. Films are important and should be watched," Thuksey Rinpoche said at the inaugural event.
Noted lyricist Gulzar, who is the patron of the film festival and inaugurated the event last year, was conspicuous by his absence this time. Mehra said Gulzar has promised him that next time he will come three days ahead of the festival. The director, whose film 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag' premiered at the festival last year, said he is glad to be back. "I am very grateful to everyone present here.
Even though this is a small festival, there are big hearts. I brought 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag' here last year. I screened it in many countries but something felt right when the movie was premiered here," the 50-year-old director said. Melwyn Williams Chirayath, founder and festival director, said he was sad to see the poor turnout on the first day but hoped the situation will improve at the screening of 'Transformers: Age of Extinction' tonight.