It has been near about 100 days since the agitating FTII students went on strike over the appointment of Gajendra Chauhan as the Chairman of the Institute. In an effort to end the long strike and relay hunger strike by three protesters, the senior BJP leader Madhav Bhandari undertook an initiative to have informal talks with the student’s representative to end the crisis that has hit the renowned campus.
Bhandari who is the chief BJP spokesman in Maharashtra later said, “My visit and talks were in personal capacity during which I tried to find a common meeting ground to end the strike. When there are negotiations to discuss the issues raised, a give and take approach and not a rigid one matters.” Further Bhandari added that there is a ray of hope that the students will soon give up their hunger strike as it has many risks involved with it and the academic activity which has come to a standstill will also be resumed soon.
While talking to the media personnels he made it very clear that he was trying his level best to come out with a solution on a personal basis and he was not pressurized by the government to have a word with the angry students.
Out of the three students who are on a relay hunger strike in the makeshift pandal on the campus one of them Himanshu Shekhar is fasting since last seven days.
FTII has been in the Top headlines of day to day news due to ongoing strike of the students over the appointment Gajendra Chauhan, as the chairman of the institute who has been a TV actor and that too also for a short span of time. The students have raised their voice over his “credentials, stature and vision” to head the prestigious institute.
Even on September 8, 2015 The Supreme Court of India declined to intervene to end the strike and said that it will not entertain public interest litigation filed seeking the Court’s intervention to compel the Union Government to took a friendly decision for the students of FTII, Pune so as to end up the ongoing strike.
Harishankar Nachimuthu and Vikas Urs who are the leaders of FTII Students’ Association (FSA) on meeting with BJP leader told him that they too are eager to end the strike as soon as possible provided that their demands are met. Further they both were of the view that since long they had been waiting for a dialogue with the government so as to discuss their demands like creation of a “transparent mechanism” to make appointments on the FTII governing body in the interest of the institution.
Nachimuthu-President of FSA said that the Director of FTII Prashant Pathrabe informed him that the Information and Broadcasting Ministry was willing to have another round of dialogue with the striking students after failure of the July 3 talks in Delhi.” But for now nothing as such has been received from Ministry in writing.
The students very frankly told that they do not have any personal grudges against Chauhan but they have reservations if taken into consideration his academic stature and his understanding of world cinema which lacks “vision”.
Even the striking students were supported by Delhi’s CM Arvind Kejriwal and Congress Vice-President, Rahul Gandhi. Earlier Rajyavardhan Rathore- Minister of State Information and Broadcasting was found stating that the government is ready to interfere and solve the trivial issue as soon as possible and for the same, a three-member team constituting the members of FTII and the ministry has been formed. The team was formed due to the crackdown of the police in the last days of the previous month in which five students were arrested.