Film makers are set to return their national awards Twelve film-makers are set to return their national awards over “growing intolerance” in the country. The film-makers, including Khosla Ka Ghosla director Dibakar Banerjee, documentary film-maker Anand Patwardhan and Gulabi Gang director Nishtha Jain, expressed their solidarity with FTII students hours after they had called off their 139-day strike against the appointment of Gajendra Chauhan as FTII chairman. Among the 12 are two young FTII alumni in Pune who will return the national awards they won for their FTII student films.
In a letter to the President and Prime Minister announcing their decision to relinquish their awards, ten of the national award-winning film-makers wrote of their “dismay” over the manner in which the government “stone-walled students’ peaceful protests and ignored their demands, while the students were publicly disgraced and discredited.” The letter spoke out against the manner in which the Information and Broadcasting Ministry had appointed people “with a narrow vision” to head institutions. It went on to talk of the atmosphere of growing intolerance, the murder of rationalists and the lynching of an ironsmith in a village on the outskirts of the capital. “Condoling deaths without interrogating the forces that scripted those murders reveals a tacit acceptance of the ugly forces distorting our country,” the letter said.


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