Film Maker & Author

Minnie Vaid

Minnie Vaid wears many hats. She has been a print journalist, starting her career with the Times of India and Illustrated Weekly, moving on to video journalism with India Today’s Newstrack, switching to documentary programmes with Business India television, anchoring and producing ROOTS, an award-winning programme on rural India.

She has specialised in making thought-provoking and hard-hitting films on social issues primarily in rural India, with a special additional focus on insurgency in strife-torn areas of the country. In every documentary of hers, whether, ‘A Doctor to Defend,’ (on Dr. Binayak Sen), ‘Satyendra Dubey: The Story of a Whistle Blower’, ‘We Have a Dream’ (on women’s empowerment in Adilabad’ or ‘Sacred Forests of Meghalaya: Wisdom From The Mother’s Hearth’ (on traditions of forest protection) Minnie gets so deep into the skin of the subject that one gets the feel that the film maker and the cause merge.

Her heart, however, lies in making documentaries. Though she did many films for various television and media houses Minnie shot into the limelight with her powerful film, ‘A Doctor to Defend: The Binayak Sen Story.’ Accompanying the film was a book (with the same title), which has now been translated into Malayalam, Tamil, Sinhala, with the Marathi version coming up very soon.

Minnie has just completed her second book – albeit a short one – on Irom Sharmila Chanu, dubbed the ‘Iron Lady of Manipur,’ whose hunger strike begun in 2000 continues today. Minnie is moving on to other genres but such themes, people who stick to their beliefs, are sure to turn her camera their way.