Theater personality Raghunandana refuses award to protest against lynching

TCN News

Theater personality S Raghunandana’s name state has been announced for the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi award for 2018 on July 17th.

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But Raghunandana, based in Bangalore, thanking the akademi members, in a press statement, said,  “This is not a protest. It comes out of despair, a helpless inability to accept the award. I respect the Akademi, and all those who have received this award, now and in the past. I thank the members of the Akademi, and apologise,”.

Raghunandana who is also a playwright, theater artist and a poet, said that his conscience does not permit him to accept the award when there is so much of injustice around him in the name of religion, God and over what one eats. He expressed sadness over the lynchings happening in the country and the atmosphere being filled with hatred and violence.

He said those ruling the country are directly or indirectly responsible for the daily acts of murder, mob lynching and the hate campaigns. He said the government is suppressing voices of dissent and hounding and imprisoning activists and intellectuals  and falsely charging them under sedition laws. And under such circumstances it does not feel right to accept the award, he shared with concern.

“The very meaning of what it is to be an Indian, and the adage Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, are being distorted, and erased,” he said in the press release