Ripples Under the Skin

  • Director

    Farha Khatun

  • Country, Year, Length

    India, 2021, 29 minutes

  • Category


  • Format


  • Festival Year


Film Screening & Ticket Information

When & Where to See this Film!



In Person Date, Time & Location:

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3RD • 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm
The Local • 13-02 44th Ave. • LIC, NY 11101


Of Land and Water: Four Films to remind us that the earth is all we have.


A 65 year old man trudges along the lanes and bylanes of a city – a city that is rapidly changing, a city of glitter and fast cars, a city of high rises and shopping malls, a city where this man with the mashaq is an aberration, a city where the toils of this man is a story to be curated, frozen, archived as a relic of the past , a city that is moving forward, towards a future that has no place for this man with a mashaq… ‘Ripples of water’ tells the story of this man and this city – it tells the story of the Calcutta that lurks behind the glitz and glamour of today’s Calcutta, it tells the story of a community of migrant workers who had come to this city to make a living, a city that never invited them yet somehow they made home, a city that they built with their blood and sweat, yet ‘home’ remained elusive, a city that nourishes, waters itself through the toils of people like Nazim kaka, yet conveniently forgets, casts them away when it chooses to walk towards the future.

This film is a story of contestations – contestation of space, resources, claims, narratives… of a community struggling to carve out a living out of a dying profession contending with a city that both embraces and marginalizes, of a profession that thrives of supplying water to homes… water that doesn’t discriminate yet over whom many wars have been fought… wars of caste, class, religion… of muslim migrant workers supplying water to homes that are inviting and uninviting, of homes that they are sustained over the labour of these people, yet homes that the same people can never claim as their own, of memory and forgetting, of dreams and spectres… above all, this is a story of struggles… the daily struggles of Nazim kaka as he tries to make a living in this city, the struggles of a Calcutta that is home to Nazim kaka, a Calcutta of hand pulled rickshaws, trams, of immigrant people that is fast fading away amidst the glitz of the ‘smart city’ that is getting built over the blood and sweat and corpses of shadow people…


Farha Khatun, Director
Farha Khatun, Writer
Films Division, Producer
Kumar Tapas Ranjan, Cinematographer
B Suresh Kumar, Location Sound
Sabyasachi Pal, Sound Design and Mixing
Santajit Chatterjee, Music
Santanu Mitra, Graphics
Amit Bagchi, Graphics
Monalisa Mukherji, Narration Script and Voice over

Director Statement

As a migrant to this city myself, as someone who had come here to make a living, Nazim kaka’s story was one that both inspired and resonated with me. Being a woman who had come to this city from a remote village, my own struggles of making a home in this city, of making a place in a profession, that is not very welcoming to people of my gender, my socio-political location, I felt compelled to tell Nazim kaka’s story, to tell the story of the other Calcutta that lurks around, to tell the story of this city that is both welcoming and unwelcoming, of people who discriminate, who marginalize, and yet, even in the midst of all these struggles, of communities who fight together to survive, of people who come together to help each other, to lean on each other… it is these solidarity of strugglers, these stories of solidarity of struggles that I wished to tell through the story of Nazim kaka. In a city that is rapidly changing, where the living breathing life of Nazim kaka merely gets frozen, archived, museumized as décor in shopping malls, where the story of water connecting people, the story of water sustaining people gets bookmarked in the pages of history, bringing Nazim kaka alive as a living being who can tell his own story, who can tell stories of labour, dreams, became a personal and political duty.

Director Biography

Farha’s directorial debut film ‘I am Bonnie’, on the tragedies, aspirations and achievements of a transgender footballer, had the world premiere at BFI Flare: London LGBT Film Festival, got the National Award for best film on social issues, awarded the Best Documentary at Kolkata International Film Festival and screened at many other international festivals. Her first feature length film ‘Holy Rights’ on Safia who joins a program for training women as Qazis (judges of Sharia court) followed by the lived experience of several women who fight against the instant triple talaq practice (Divorce by saying Talaq thrice)– Won the National Award for best film on social issues, awarded the Impact Award and the Best Cinematography award at Vancouver IWFF, NATIONAL LAADLI media and advertising award for Gender Sensitivity 2020 and currently travelling to many national and International festivals. The film was broadcasted on KLIK Indonesia and SBS Australia.