Drowned Out

English director Franny Armstrong surveys India's misguided dam-building agenda (rooted in Nehru's conviction that “dams are the temples of modern India”) and investigates a grassroots movement that used nonviolent tactics to save the Narmada River. “We will drown but we will not move,” promises Luhariya Sonkariya, an herbalist turned activist who has rejected resettlement offers from the government and symbolically drowns a colorful statue, the “demon of the dam,” in the sacred waters. The video suffers from lapses in chronology but offers powerful images of farmers standing chest deep in swirling waters as they're clubbed by police. 75 min.

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