Amid the existing clamour surrounding the appointment of actor and BJP member Gajendra Chauhan as FTII chairman, an alumnus of the premier institute says the students are hoping the government will support them.
“We are hopeful that some solution will come from the government’s side. We had even sent a letter to the president, so hopefully he must have communicated his concern to Prime Minister Narendra Modi or the ministers,” Kislay Gonzalvez, an FTII alumnus, told IANS at a press conference here. In addition to the eminent personalities like Resul Pookutty, Farhan Akhtar and Subhash Ghai, and students across India, American citizens including professors and students have also lent their support to the protesting Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) students. Professors like Noam Chomsky, Sheldon Pollock, Bhaskar Sarkar, and Pankaj Mehta, to name a few, have come on board in support of the students who have been on strike for 109 days against the appointment of not only Chauhan but four more members who are “directly associated with the ruling party” and do not possess the credentials to run a premier institute like FTII. “With the presence of our PM Narendra Modi in the US, a few friends there circulated a letter among the students community, teachers and professors. More than 125 people from different colleges signed the letter in support, saying that the PM should definitely intervene to end the stalemate at FTII,” Gonzalvez said. With this hope, the students are also hoping that government won’t make this a “prestige issue”. A meeting will be held in Mumbai on Tuesday between the FTII students and the information and broadcasting (I&B) ministry.