Now, strike-plagued FTII braces itself for second round of agitation

Updated - November 16, 2021 05:30 pm IST

Published - July 09, 2015 10:14 am IST - Pune:

With the fire of controversy surrounding the appointment of TV actor- turned-BJP politico Gajendra Chauhan’s appointment as chairman of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) yet to subside, the agitating students are already gearing up for a second strike in protest against the panel to appoint a new Director to the institute.

As the students’ indefinite strike entered its 27th day, matters took a turn for the worse after the FTII Students’ Association (FSA) vociferously opposed the selection panel to appoint the new director on learning that Mr. Chauhan was one of the members of the selection committee.

The tenure of the present director, D.J. Narain, ends on July 18. Mr. Narain took over as FTII Director in July 2011 and was given a year’s extension in July 2014.

Read: >All you need to know about the FTII students strike

According to a strong statement issued by the FSA, the move [to select a new director] “hampers all efforts to arrive at a meaningful solution to the striking students’ demands”.

“We strongly voice our objection...and condemn this action and hope that the government, with immediate effect, put the current FTII society in suspended animation till a mutually acceptable solution is reached,” said the FSA statement.

Earlier, Mr. Chauhan had said that the meeting to pick a new director is tentatively scheduled for July 13 with the venue being either New Delhi or Mumbai. He confirmed that he was part of the selection panel.

According to sources, the Information and Broadcasting (I & B) Ministry, that has been working for the last six months to pick a new director has shortlisted 14 names.

Mr. Chauhan, in tandem with Ministry authorities, would complete the selection process in the next four or five months.

It is being speculated that Mr. Narain, who has been given additional charge as Director- General of the Films Division in Mumbai, may be asked to hold on to his present post till the Ministry can arrange for a new director to take charge.

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