2012 IFFI schedule altered for St Xavier feast

Panaji: The 2012 edition of International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa is scheduled to be held between November 20 and 30 this year, shifting the dates for the first time ever since it traveled to the coastal state eight years ago.

Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said the IFFI dates have been altered to make way for the celebration of the annual feast of patron saint, St Francis Xavier, in Old Goa, starting from December 3.

The Catholic community in the state had demanded to shift the IFFI dates. Usually, IFFI is held every year from November 23 to December 3. The Directorate of Film Festival (DFF) has been consulted before changing the dates, Parrikar said.

The Congress-led government had refused to amend the IFFI schedule, earning ire from the community. Parrikar said that now, proper attention would be given on both the events.

"We want IFFI to finish much early to that of the feast so that we can have proper arrangements for the celebration of the patron saint," he said.

In view of the feast, thousands of people from across the globe throng to Old Goa, where relics of St Francis Xavier are preserved.