FTII Row: Delhi, Pune to raise protest on Aug 3


New Delhi: Upset with a lack of a “channel of communication” with the ministry of information and broadcasting over the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) row, students of the facility on Wednesday announced plans to protest in the capital and in Pune on August 3.The students have been rallying against actor Gajendra Chauhan’s appointment as chairman of the institute since over a month as they feel he is not qualified for the position.

“As all our repeated efforts in trying to open a channel of communication with the information and broadcasting ministry stand ignored, we are left with little option but to escalate our protest and make our voices heard in the power corridors of New Delhi,” read a statement from the Students’ Association of FTII.On July 20, the new FTII director Prasanth Pathrabe stated that the ministry was willing to open a dialogue only if the students took back their demand for dissolution of the FTII society.

But FTII students have emphasised that the ministry has not responded to their queries. The five members of the FTII society — Anagha Ghaisas, Shailesh Gupta, Narendra Pathak, Pranjal Saikia and Rahul Solapurkar — are in the eye of the storm, with students alleging they have links to BJP and RSS and also lack the required credentials.

Actress Vidya Balan and filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani are also part of the same society.There were also reports of vandalism at the FTII campus, following which students have sought police security. The statement also urged mediapersons to shun all unreliable sources and refrain from sensationalising the matter. “We sincerely request all journalists, reporters and media organisations to desist from this fruitless sensationalising of news, which only trivialise than encourage a healthy debate over this rather important issue of national concern. “We urge our friends in media to confirm facts before putting out reports pertaining to the current FTII society imbroglio.”