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HomeNewsNSD 'fatwa' on play with PM Modi's speech reference creates ripples

NSD ‘fatwa’ on play with PM Modi’s speech reference creates ripples

KOLKATA: A letter from the registrar of National School of Drama, Delhi, asking all organisations that have obtained a grant under the scheme of ‘guru shishya parampara (repertory grant)’ to stage a play titled ‘Lo Aai Wapas Sone Ki Chidiya’ having three themes – ‘Vasudeva Kutumbakam’, ‘Panch Pran’ and ‘Vikashit Bharat’ – has sent ripples across Bengal’s theatre corridors.

The reason is a line from the script of the play, with a

reference

to

PM Modi’s speech

at the G20 Summit.
According to the script of ‘Lo Aai Wapas Sone Ki Chidiya’, all three themes have to be mentioned. Also mentioned in the script is the reference to PM Modi’s speech.
State education minister and theatre personality Bratya Basu took to X to protest this mandate. “Our state govt does not factor in who is in favour or against the ruling dispensation while giving grants. I want to see the repertory grant list on Feb 21 and understand the fate of those groups in Bengal that refuse to toe the line,” Basu told TOI.
Debjani Mukhopadhyay, a volunteer for Bengal’s performance at Bharat Rang Mahotsav, said: “Performing arts groups are required to prepare a production for Jan Bharat Rang. They are required to record the performances live on social media platforms and submit the link to the

NSD

.”

“Above 400 theatre groups have registered. I have no information about the link of forthcoming grants with the consent given by groups for staging this play,” she added.
Theatre artist Bibhas Chakraborty told TOI that the letter has been sent to Annya Theatre. “I wanted to know if this production has any link with the grant we receive.”
Actor-director Sujan Mukhopadhyay said, “After being blacklisted from 2014 till 2021, we got a meagre grant in 2022-23. I have chosen a play on the theme of ‘Vasudeva Kutumbakam’ that talks about Pancham Ved (Natya Shashtra). But we won’t utter the name of any political leader,” he said.
Theatre director Arpita Ghosh, whose group Pancham Vaidik has been a recipient of the repertory grant, has not accepted this mandate. “This play follows the RSS line. It disregards the work done from the Mughal period. I don’t mind being blacklisted from grants,” Ghosh added.

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