Hope FTII students won’t spoil country’s image at IFFI: Centre

Panaji: Amid reports of a likely protest by FTII students at the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) venue here, the government today said that they were hopeful that the students would not do anything that will hurt the country’s image at a global platform. “The students of FTII are equally patriotic. They will not besmirch India’s reputation. This is an event of international scale. Beyond that I cannot really comment,” Sunil Arora, Union Secretary for Information and Broadcasting, said while addressing a press conference today.

However, when asked about media reports that the FTII students were planning a protest at the venue against the appointment of Gajendra Chauhan as Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) chairman, Arora said that he was not worried about being embarrassed by any protest.

According to the reports, the students were planning to launch a protest during the 11-day IFFI extravaganza, starting on November 20, which includes screening of films and documentaries on their 139-day strike against Chauhan’s appointment.

The Goa government, meanwhile is not taking any chances and is on the guard to tackle any situation at the event. “We are fully geared to deal with any eventuality. The Goa Police is competent to deal with any eventuality,” said state chief secretary R K Srivastava. The FTII students went on strike on June 12 against Chauhan, who they say is not fit to head the country’s premier film institute. However, they withdrew their strike unilaterally on October 28.

While Bollywood actor Anil Kapoor will be the chief guest at the opening ceremony of the 46th edition of IFFI on November 20, Oscar-awardee A R Rehman will bring the festival to close. As many as 187 films in various sections from 89 countries, including 47 films in the Indian panorama section, will be screened at the IFFI.

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