FTII agitation enters 12th day with no headway in sight

FTTI students called for removal of Chauhan from post of chairman citing political agenda rather than merit as reason behind his appointment.

By: Press Trust of India | Pune | Published: June 23, 2015 2:40 pm
FTII protests, PTII diresctor, Gajendra Chauhan, Gajendra Chauhan protests, Film and Television Institute of India, FTII, FTII Pune, FTII Students' Association, FSA, Student agitation, Student protest, Student stir, FTII row, FTII strike, FTII chairman row, Gajendra Chauhan, BJP MP, BJP, RSS, Pune news, Maharashtra news, India news, Asia news, World news, Indian Express At the FTII on Saturday, the ninth day of the students’ strike. (Source: Express Photo by Sandeep Daundkar)

The ongoing strike of the students of FTII to protest the government’s appointment of TV actor Gajendra Chauhan as chairman of its governing council entered its 12th day on Tuesday with no immediate solution in sight.

“We have written to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry seeking an appointment to discuss the issues in response to its communication expressing willingness for a dialogue with the students. However, we are still awaiting a confirmation of the appointment,” FTII Students’ Association (FSA) president Harishankar Nachimuthu told PTI on Tuesday.

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The Information and Broadcasting Ministry had last week offered to discuss “all relevant issues” after the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) students stuck to their demand for revoking the appointment of Chauhan.

The FSA has alleged that Chauhan, known for his role of Yudhishthira in television serial ‘Mahabharat’, lacked the “credentials and vision” to head an institution such as FTII, which is supposed to give direction to the Indian cinema.

It has also called for removal of five members of the FTII society who reportedly have affiliation with BJP and RSS.

Asked on composition of the proposed delegation of students expected to meet the Ministry authorities on confirmation of their appointment, he said, “It will comprise both current and past students of FTII.”

Meanwhile, peaceful protests on the campus continued with the striking students putting up various new posters, slogans and street plays condemning Chauhan’s appointment, suggesting it was a political one without merit because of his association with the ruling BJP.

Chauhan had earlier claimed there was a “conspiracy” behind the protests. “It is a conspiracy of some individual, who has a personal issue here. This matter is being politicised,” he had said.

He had requested the protesting students to stay away from this politics as it will not benefit them.

On his credentials to be appointed to the FTII post, he had said, “I have been interviewed by the ministry multiple times before I was put on this post. It was not an overnight decision by anyone.”

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