Kerala State Chalachitra Academy Council Demands Action Against Chairman Ranjith; Here's Why

(MENAFN- AsiaNet News) As the 28th International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) nears its conclusion, internal tensions have surfaced within the Kerala State Chalachitra Academy, the festival's organizer. Nine members of the academy's general council are urging the State government to remove Chairman Ranjith. This request comes amid a controversy over remarks made by Ranjith during a press conference.

The nine members sent a letter to the government demanding action against Ranjith. The members said that the behavior of Ranjith is that of a dictator. They also said that Ranjith had misunderstood that the festival is continuing because of him and his misunderstanding is affecting the celebration of the festival.

The council members told the media that Ranjith has decided to expand and bring in new executive members as it is not decided by the chairman. In the context of the IFFK, the members stated that they were not interested in going into the controversy that would tarnish the fair, but the chairman was doing baseless things.
Members of the Academy have raised concerns about the chairman making decisions unilaterally. A letter has been sent to the Culture Minister and Culture Secretary, seeking to change Ranjith as Chairman of the Academy. Dissatisfaction among members has been ongoing, with increased tension after a controversy surrounding an interview. The government is expected to make a final decision. The Culture Minister expressed displeasure with the chairman's remarks about Biju and urged against reviving public disputes. Academy members are apprehensive about potential reactions during the film festival.

Filmmaker Bijukumar Damodaran, known as Dr. Biju, resigned from the board of the Kerala State Film Development Corporation (KSFDC) a day after Chairman Ranjith's controversial remarks about Dr. Biju and his film "Adrishya Jalakangal." Ranjith questioned Dr. Biju's relevance based on the film's audience attendance. In response, Dr. Biju, in a Facebook post, asserted that Ranjith was not qualified to judge his work, citing international recognition from a jury led by Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan.

Mr. Ranjith stated to the media that general council members are welcome to present evidence supporting their claims to the government. The Minister for Cultural Affairs may seek an explanation, and Mr. Ranjith is prepared to provide his perspective on the matter. This exchange reflects an ongoing dialogue regarding the concerns raised within the Academy.


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