A session of the Indian People’s Theatre Association’s (IPTA) national conference in Indore was allegedly disrupted on Tuesday by right-wing Hindu activists who accused the organisers of allowing anti-national activities.
While inaugurating the three-day conference on Sunday, filmmaker M S Sathyu had criticised the surgical strikes by India in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK), calling it “shameful”. He laid stress on peace and dialogue between the two countries.
On Tuesday afternoon, a group of activists barged into the Anand Mathur Auditorium and reportedly snatched the microphone from a speaker. Shouting slogans, they accused the organisers of allowing anti-national speeches over the last two days.
“The commotion confused the panelists, some thought it was a staged performance before they realised they were being criticised. The protesters were forced out of the venue. They pelted stones while leaving the venue, injuring one volunteer,’’ Vinit Tiwari, an IPTA member, told The Indian Express.
“They are born anti-nationals,’’ said RSS Malwa Prant Prachar pramukh Praveen Kabra, also alleging that some performances promoted casteism. “How could one be ashamed of the surgical strikes which were supported by all political parties,’’ he said.
The activists alleged that the performances over the last two days had anti-national content and promoted casteism. After they were removed from the venue, the protesters went to the local police station and sought to register a complaint against the organisers for sedition.
While the injured IPTA volunteer also submitted a complaint, the police station in-charge Prashant Yadav said no FIR has been registered so far.