Online Film Screening: Landless by Randeep Maddoke


Translation from Punjabi to English provided. Discussion with Filmmaker to follow.  

It is a metaphoric question that Landless begins with: Do scarecrows have their own land? Director Randeep Maddoke’s Landless is a moving account of Dalit labourers’ struggles in East Punjab for land and a life of dignity. It opens a window onto Dalits’ organic solidarity across the caste faultline with the ongoing farmers’ movement and a mode of collective farming by Dalits that marginal Jat farmers could learn from. Landless is a prescient meditation in the wake of the Farmers’ Movement in India today.

Filmmaker Randeep Maddoke is a Punjab-based concept photographer and documentary filmmaker. He was born and raised in a Dalit landless family of the village Maddoke in the Moga district of Punjab. As an activist, Randeep travelled by bicycle from village to village, organizing meetings on agricultural labour and farmers’ rights. He also joined an activist theatre group. He was only able to study up to the 12th Grade and quit his studies in 2004 to do what most boys with similar family backgrounds did: work as an agricultural labourer, as a daily wager in town, or as a wall-painter in house construction. At the age of thirty, and eight years into union activism, he enrolled in the Government College of Arts, Chandigarh and graduated with a specialization in Graphics (Printmaking). Randeep has documented the class struggle of Dalits in Punjab, Haryana, and Tamil Nadu to study the practice and effects of caste. In 2008, he went to Nepal to document the making of the Democratic Republic out of monarchical Nepal. There too, he located the threads of casteism and the resistance thereof. Presently, Randeep is leading a team of artists chronicling the farmers’ massive resistance movement against the neoliberal onslaughts of the Indian state.

To register, please contact:

Presented by SAGA (South Asia Graduates for the Arts) UBC and Centre for India and South Asia Research.

SAGA (South Asia Graduates for the Arts) UBC is a new grassroots initiative run by graduate students for fellow graduate students, alumni, and the wider community. Their aim is to increase connection amongst South-Asia studies students, South Asian students, and South Asia-focused clubs with the wider South Asian community in the Lower Mainland. Their first Meet n’ Greet Dinner will be taking place online on Thursday, January 28th from 7-8pm. The purpose of this event is to bring together South Asia-focused graduate students across a variety of faculties and disciplines. For more information or to register, please contact them at: