Gajendra Chauhan, the controversial chairman of Film and Television Institute of India, met RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat at the right wing organisation’s headquarters in Nagpur on Thursday.
Sources in the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh said Chauhan talked with Bhagwat for over half an hour and apprised him about the latest development at FTII where students are still opposing his appointment.
“The talk between Chauhan and Bhagwat was one to one,” a senior swayamsevak, who did not wish to be named, said.
He added that during the closed-door meeting, Bhagwat reportedly told him to continue as the chairperson of the institution and not to bow down to opposition pressure.
Chauhan, best known for his portrayal of ‘Yudhishthir’ in television series Mahabharat, said that his visit to the RSS headquarters was a private one.
“Bhagwatji is a father figure for me and I came here to invite him for my son’s marriage,” he said.
Chauhan justified removing a few students, who had already completed their course, from their hostel rooms in the FTII campus.
“A student can stay in the hostel for three years for the completion of the course. After that they can get just one-year extension,” he said.
Chauhan, a BJP-leaning TV actor, faced huge protests after being appointed as the FTII chairperson last year. Amidst massive protests and detentions, he took the charge of the premier institute and asserted that he would not resign from the post.
FTII students went on an indefinite strike against Chauhan’s appointment and several filmmakers supported their agitation. The students alleged that the TV star lacked vision and stature to head the prestigious institute.
The students called off their strike in October last year.