“A Billion Colour Story” won the top prize at the eighth Bagri Foundation London Indian Film Festival in London and Birmingham, the U.K. and Europe’s largest platform of independent cinema from the Indian subcontinent.

The film, which is a powerful plea for Hindu-Muslim unity and religious harmony, received the audience award for best film at LIFF.

“We’re thrilled and truly, absolutely honored, to receive this award,” said the film’s director Padmakumar Narasimhamurthy and producer Satish Kaushik. ” It’s incredibly special for us that ‘A Billion Colour Story’ resonates with audiences across countries and continents. It continues to vindicate our faith that people and their hearts are the same across cultures and horizons. We dedicate this award to the victims of the recent lynchings, in India.”

Three Sunmark Icon Awards for South Asian directors who have made a global contribution to cinema were presented to directors Adoor Gopalakrishnan and Ashutosh Gowariker; plus documentary filmmaker and British Asian LGBTQ+ activist Pratibha Parmar.

The Sunmark achievement award went to actress Anjali Patil for her first feature film, “Delhi in a Day,” which was showcased at the festival in 2011. LIFF’s annual Satyajit Ray Short Film Award went to “Papa,” directed by Siddharth Chauhan.

The festival, which began June 22, closes July 2 at the BFI Southbank and Birmingham at Cineworld Broad Street with a thriller set in Kerala, “Sexy Durga.”

“It is wonderful that the festival continues to lead the debate and not simply reflect the changing shape of Indian cinema, from this year’s Indian virtual reality showcases to bringing carefully curated important new talent to the world stage like Anjali Patil to showcasing emerging young directors like Sanal Kumar Sasidharan, director of closing night film, ‘Sexy Durga,’” said festival executive and programming director Cary Rajinder Sawhney.