By Aranya Shankar and Aditi Vatsa
Taking offence to the contents of a street play performed by SGBT Khalsa College, the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) — led by right-wing Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) — has called for a ban on the college theatre group for the play’s alleged “anti-Hindu” tone. The development has forced the theatre group to pull back from two performances this week.
In a letter to the SGBT Khalsa Principal, DUSU joint secretary Ashutosh Mathur alleged that the college dramatics society, Ankur, had presented “a fake drama on Hindu and Hinduism”.
“Ankur Society” of SGBT Khalsa College is performing a play which is anti-Hindu and giving a wrong message to society. You are requested to take strong action against the society and ban it with immediate effect,” the letter stated.
Called Welcome to the Machine, the play investigates the occurrence of communal riots. Guneet Singh Nanda, a third year student who has directed the play, said it shows that riots are state-sponsored programmes carried out to polarise votes.
He said that the play mentions remarks made by VHP leader Sadhvi Prachi, BJP MP from Gorakhpur Yogi Adityanath, RSS head Mohan Bhagwat and RSS ideologue Dinanath Batra.
Justifying his stand on the issue, Mathur said that the play attempted to malign Hindus. “Around 40-50 students complained to me about the play which was performed in Ramjas College two weeks ago. In the play, performers threw headbands which had Ram Naam written on them. They used abusive language against Hindu culture and portrayed Hindus as rioters.”
While college authorities could not be contacted despite repeated attempts, sources in the college said that a disciplinary committee was looking into the matter.
(Aranya Shankar is a student of EXIMS)