Pune/Nagpur: Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Friday visited the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) and expressed solidarity with the agitating students.
The FTII students requested Rahul Gandhi to raise their protest in Parliament. “We want you to take our fight to Parliament,” one of the FTTI students told Rahul Gandhi.
“Why is the government disturbed by your protests,” Rahul Gandhi asked the protesting FTTI students.
“A person who is mediocre has been put on top of people who don’t want to be mediocre,” Rahul Gandhi said.
“The RSS and its wings promote mediocrity. I have seen this everywhere,” Rahul Gandhi told agitating students.
“They will say you are anti-national, anti-Hindu. They are scared of you. That is the nature of a bully,” Rahul Gandh said.
“If PM Narendra Modi has decided on Gajendra Chuhan, no one can change that in BJP,” the Congress VP added.
FTII students have been on strike since June 12 against the “political appointment” of Gajendra Chauhan as chairperson of the FTII society along with four other members. The students have alleged that all five “lack credentials” and have been appointed because of their “affiliations” to the RSS or the BJP.
“We wrote to Gandhi and various other MPs urging them to take up the FTII issue in the Parliament. We will request him again to take up our cause,” said Ajayan Adat, representative of the FTII students’ association. Around 100 students from the institute along with other supporters from various education institutes and other organziations will hold a protest rally from Jantar Mantar to the Parliament House in New Delhi on Monday.
A 10-member delegation had met the I&B minister Arun Jaitley on July 3 but the interaction “failed” as the ministry refused a rollback Chauhan’s appointment as the chairperson of the FTII Society and dissolve the society. The students have written to the ministry four times and have not got a reply.
The students then wrote to all members of Parliament in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. The FTII alumni also wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his intervention, but there has been no reply.