Confusion, fury continue at the youth fest

Confusion, fury continue at the youth fest

Artistes accuse Youth Department officers of discrimination in giving prizes

Confusion, fury continue at the youth fest

The tension and confusion at the district level youth fest in the city, inaugurated on Friday, continued for the second day on Saturday.

While artistes complained of discrimination in judging the events, the officers of the Department of Youth Services and Sports failed to convince them that the rules had been followed in awarding prizes.

Following requests not to organise the folk arts competition on Friday, the officers had postponed the event to Saturday.

But, when the prizes were announced on Saturday, some of the participants were furious that contestants who ‘knew nothing’ of folk art and even mispronounced words were awarded, while they were denied prizes although they performed better.

Hurdles to organise

The officers in turn asked the participants why they had been preventing the proper organisation of the fest on both days, asking them to stop creating problems.
“Your complaints will hurt the winners as they deserved the prizes,” they told the participants.

The artistes retaliated complaining further that the event had only one judge, while the rules require the fest to have at least three judges.

“All decisions are one-sided. Kannada songs translated from Telugu have been added to the folk category. The participants are required to be within 18 to 35 years of age. But the contestants are younger than 15 years,” they complained.

Krishnamurthy, judge for the contest, insisted that the prizes were awarded as per rules. “A song consists of various aspects including tune and meter. All such factors have been considered while choosing the winners,” he explained.

B Rudrappa, assistant director of the Department, said people were trying desperately to put a black mark on the fest.

After the Department officers failed to pacify and convince the artistes, police had to arrive at the venue to control the situation.

On Friday

Many artistes complained on Friday that they had not received any invite from the Department officers for the competition and also accused the officers of prejudice in favour of their desired artistes.

The start of the competition was delayed by more than an hour because of the confusion. Efforts by the officers to pacify the artistes failed as the complaints continued. “Only people with mobile phones have access to any information on the event. Contestants in rural areas were not informed at all,” said participants.

While the officers said the organisation of the contest had already been delayed and the state level contest will soon begin, some of the artistes countered saying such hurried organisation of events is a regular occurrence. “There are barely any folk artistes in this competition. What is the meaning of such an event, then?” they asked.

“The district continues to fail in the state level contest the last three years. We are displaying a desperate shortage of talent,” the artistes argued, threatening not to let the contest continue.

Artistes who had arrived from various ends of the district were at a receiving end of the argument and confusion as they had to wait a long time to begin their performance.
Rudrappa pacified the angry artistes, saying the folk events would be held on Saturday. Only the other events would continue on Friday, he clarified.