After 71 days of tussle, there appears to be some sort of an understanding and signs of possible rapprochement in the corridors of Pune-based Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) on Friday.
Students have been up in arms against the appointment of TV personality Gajendra Chauhan as Chairman of FTII Governing Council and the evaluation of projects of 2008-batch on pro rata or as where is basis. The development happened a day after the students sought the intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to resolve the crisis.
A three-member team of Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) comprising S M Khan, who is the Director General of Registrar of Newspapers for India, Anshu Sinha, Director (Films) and S Naganathan, Under Secretary (Films), initiated a dialogue with the students.
“There were very good discussions, we would be submitting our report to the ministry,” Khan, who leads the delegation, told reporters here. “We had come here with an open mind and spoke to all concerned, we took note of the suggestions,” he added.
The team initially met FTII Director Prashant Pathrabe and then faculty members and FTII Students Association.
“There has been some opening in a positive view. We have shared our views. We have put forth our points,” an FTII Students Association spokesperson said.
This is the first time the ministry has sent a delegation to Pune to resolve the crisis, which begun on June 12 with students striking and boycotting classes over the appointment of Chauhan. In the last couple of weeks, the issue compounded further over the sudden decision by the FTII administration to assess the incomplete projects of 49 students of the 2008 batch.
Mamata backs students
Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee threw in her weight behind the agitating students in a Facebook statement. She is the latest politician joining the bandwagon of political leaders and celebrities who have come out in support of the students.