FTII students protest against appointment of Gajendra Chauhan

By: | Published: June 15, 2015 11:35 AM

Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) students on Sunday protested against the appointment of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member and TV actor Gajendra Chauhan as the new chairman of its governing council.

Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) students on Sunday protested against the appointment of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member and TV actor Gajendra Chauhan as the new chairman of its governing council.

The protesters alleged that Chauhan lacked experience and stature and he was chosen for the key post due to his affiliation with the the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). A billboard at the entrance asked Chauhan to resign and leave.

The students wrote to the government asserting that they would continue their protest till the appointment of Chauhan was revoked.

“We would like to know what process was followed to appoint this gentleman. What were the parameters on the basis of which this person was appointed? We would like to talk to him to know his body of work. It will continue till our demands are met,” said FTII student, Yash Mishra.

The students have been boycotting classes and shut down administrative offices on the campus to vent out their anger.

“We certainly see this as a way to curb a lot of progressive and liberal institutes and we can’t let this happen to a place called FTII,” said another student, Ranjit Nayar.

Chauhan on Saturday attempted to downplay the issue, and said he was ready to resolve the matter through talks.

“I am shocked and surprised, because I am unable to understand the reason for all the opposition taking place. They should have talked to me and met me. I am trying my level best to go and meet them actually, sit with them across the table and sort it out,” Chauhan told ANI.

“If they have something in mind, like I have been asked by many channels and people that there are big people in the queue up. I don’t know how you decide about a big person and a small person. If you keep giving chances to big people, as you consider, then small people have no place in this country,” he added.

Chauhan further made it clear that the decision about his position has been taken by the concerned minister and the future pronouncement also rests with him.

“The minister had decided about my placing as the chairperson of FTII. He has to decide further. My thing is that I have worked with hundreds and hundreds of directors. So, there is no question that I don’t have knowledge of film-making. My USP is my honesty with work,” he said.

“This is true that I am associated. I am a member of BJP. But, that is not the only reason. If the minister has to decide then he has to decide on the basis of the capability. It is not only the minister who has to decide. There is a board, there is a committee. Lots of discussions are held. I remember, it took almost six months for me to come down to this position, for my name to be shortlisted for this,” he added.

“My resolution is I will go, I will meet, I will join and I listen to them. I promise all the students, I will listen to each and every one of them. I promise to them I will try to sort out all their problems,” Chauhan added.

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