Chaliyar... The Final Struggle
"All I wish is to see my river come back to life just once, see the fish leap in the sun. And see that my people don't have to die any more like I will" – Late Sri K A Rahman. In 1958, the Kerala government persuaded the Birlas to open a factory in Mavoor, North Kerala.
The Grasim rayon pulp factory, since then, has been providing not only livelihood to thousands, but also slow death. The fumes and effluents discharged into the Chaliyar river poison the waters en route to the sea. 'Chaliyar... the Final Struggle', a film by P. Baburaj and C. Sarathchandran, highlights the struggle of the people to save their river and their lives from the factory. At a time when environmentalism was unheard of, one man leads his people to dream of their river coming back to life. This documentary, a 'Bronze Tree' winner at Vatavaran 2002, has been taken to more than 14,000 people in Kerala through video projections.