With the tenure of Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) director DJ Narain ending on July 17, there seems to be another uncertainty in store for the institute. The candidate for the post was to be decided at a meeting on July 13 which was cancelled by the Information and Broadcasting (I&B) Ministry a day earlier.
Narain, who was appointed in 2011 for a three-year term and was given an extension of one year last year, said, “The government must be in the process of deciding the future course of action. Whatever action it takes will be in the interest of the institute,” said Narain.
Before the July 13 meeting, the students had declared they will strongly protest the appointment of the new director as the panel that was going to decide the candidate included Gajendra Chauhan as one of the members. When asked about the next date of the meeting, even Chauhan had no clarity. “I do not have any information on this,” he had said.
Meanwhile, there is a lot of unrest and confusion among students who feel that the government should show more clarity.
“When the July 13 meeting was cancelled, we were hoping the current director will be given an extension at least until the problem is resolved. However, with his (Narain’s) term ending in two days, we are not aware who will be taking over as the director,”
said Ranjeet Nair, one of the students.
He added the students have written to the Information and Broadcasting ministry seeking second round of dialogue, but they are yet to receive a response.
“We hope the director gets an extension as he is the channel through which we have been able to communicate with the ministry and vice-versa. He knows the issue and our concerns very well. Since he has spent four years at the institute, we share an understanding with him. With him around, we will be able to arrive at a solution in an amicable manner,” said Vikas Urs, another student.
Sources from the Information and Broadcasting Ministry indicated that they are mulling appointing a part-time director as a stop-gap arrangement till a regular appointment is finalised. They also did not rule out the possibility of giving another extension to Narain.