Rahul Gandhi meets President over FTII row

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Aug 14, 2015 01:47 IST

Continuing his attack on the government over the appointment of actor Gajendra Chauhan as chairman of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday led a party delegation to President Pranab Mukherjee to protest the appointment.

Educational institutions were being “captured” by the RSS and only those “singing praises” of the Prime Minister and BJP are being “placed on top”, Gandhi claimed.

“The people who are placed on top of them (the students) do not have the merit to be placed on top. The only merit they have is that they have sung praises of the Prime Minister, the BJP and believe in the ideology of the RSS,” he told reporters.

The memorandum submitted to the President claimed there was a pattern of poor appointments: “The situation in FTII is emblematic of a disturbing trend in institutional appointments. In the last year, several appointments to institutes of higher education and culture have come under scrutiny and controversy because the individuals concerned were not selected for excellence in their respective fields, but because they were partisans to a particular worldview.” It mentioned the ICHR, BHU and ICCR as examples.

Gandhi had recently visited FTII campus in Pune to express solidarity with the students protesting for two months against the appointment.

Congress leaders Mani Shankar Aiyar, Manish Tewari, Kumari Selja, Raj Babbar, among others, accompanied Gandhi.

“We briefed the President on the FTII matter,” Gandhi added.

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