The 10-member FTII (Film and Television Institute of India) team that held meeting with officials of Information and Broadcasting Ministry in Delhi and later with I&B minister Arun Jaitley has said though they are not fully satisfied with the meeting, they are hoping that the issue might reach its logical conclusion soon.
The 10-member team comprised a few FTII students as well as alumni, including Girish Kasaravalli, Bina Paul, Fareeda Mehta, Paresh Kamdar, Resul Pukutty, Dharam Gulati, Prateek Vats, Harishankar Nachimuthu, Vikas Urs and Reema Kaur.
Paul, former FTII student who attended the meeting, said, “We went there as representatives of FTII students and to mediate the issue. The minister (Arun Jaitley) gave us a good ear and assured us. So, there is a window. We are hopeful. Let us see.”
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“Overall, it was a fruitful meeting. While a lot of assurances were given on other issues raised by us, the main issue (removal of Gajendra Chauhan and a few other members of FTII society), wasn’t discussed the way it was supposed to. It was kind of ignored. Whatever suggestions we gave relating to the future of FTII were heard by the minister and he assured us he would give the matter a thought. They asked us to end the strike and begin normal functioning,” said Kaur, a final-year editing student, adding that as far as the continuation of the strike is concerned, a decision will be taken on Saturday after discussing it with FTII students and the students’ body.
Kaur said the meetings with the officials as well as the minister lasted over two-and-a-half hours. “The Institute of National Importance status issue was discussed in detail and we are told it will be implemented soon,” she said.
Among the 250-plus people who were sitting in the support of the FTII students outside Prasar Bharti in the Capital included Kislay, who is currently studying at FTII. “Our main concern was the appointment of Gajendra Chauhan as the chairman. Since a decision hasn’t been taken on that front, the strike will continue,” Kislay said.
He said a group from amongst them was detained at the police station for more than five hours. “It wasn’t even a protest; we were just sitting in solidarity of the students,” he said.