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BJP’s man “Yudhishthira” brings war to FTII

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Published on June 19, 2015 with No Comments

Who is Gajendra Chauhan?
He is best known as Yudhishthira in the hugely popular Mahabharata TV series produced by B.R. Chopra and aired on Doordarshan between1988-90. Other than this, Chauhan has appeared in numerous television soaps, generally of inferior quality, and several ‘B’ grade Bollywood ventures. Associated with the BJP for two decades, Chauhan formally joined the party in 2004. He extensively campaigned for the BJP in Haryana during the Lok Sabha elections last year. His appointment as FTII chief on June 10 sent ripples across the film fraternity, with many viewing it as an instance of political largesse.

Students of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), India’s premier film education centre, have gone on an indefinite strike since June 12 protesting the Information & Broadcast Ministry’s surprise appointment of television actor-turned-politician Gajendra Chauhan as Chairman of the institute.
Given his limited artistic abilities and dubious capabilities in helming an institute as prestigious as the FTII, students are disappointed about the fact that their new Chairman is a BJP party worker.
The students at FTII have sharply questioned Chauhan’s “creative credentials” and whether he has the requisite vision in guiding the institute that has been earlier helmed by internationally-renowned luminaries such as Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Girish Karnad, U.R. Ananthamurthy, and Shyam Benegal, who have graced Indian theatre, cinema and literature.
Many view the appointment as an attempt by the Narendra Modi-led BJP government to foist its right-wing agenda upon the institute.“There are so many eminent personalities who could have been chosen for the post. While we have nothing against any party, we cannot accept this appointment on creative grounds and have accordingly submitted our demands to our Director and are awaiting a response from the I& B Ministry,” said Harishankar Nachimuthu, president, FTII Students’ Association.

 

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