Artistes seek protection -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Artistes seek protection

HYDERABAD: The Hyderabad Stage Council has condemned harassment unleashed against the organisers of stage plays and artistes by miscreants at the local Open Air Theatre and threatened to stage protest demonstrations and observe hunger strikes if foolproof security is not provided to them.

At a news conference here on Wednesday, the chairman of the council, Ramesh Kumar, Momin Khan Momin and other office-bearers of the council, said that Hyderabad was famous for its hospitality and it had produced eminent poets, writers and artists. Cultural activities used to be the hallmark of this city, they said.

Ramesh Kumar said that when there was anarchy every where, artistes were trying to create an atmosphere of peace and love by staging dramas in the city.

He thanked the district administration for renovating the Open Air Theatre but said that in absence of proper security, some miscreants were trying to create problems for the drama organisers and the artistes.

He pointed out that the organisers spent between Rs60,000 to Rs70,000 on a stage drama and in absence of cooperation from the administration, the producer and the organisers have to suffer huge losses.

He argued that the organizers, before staging any play, had to complete all the legal formalities and pay Rs1,500 fee for seeking permission. He, however, complained that the concerned SHO recovered Rs1,500 per show and if this amount was not paid to him, he forced the organisers to abandon the programme. The organisers also paid excise duty and it was, therefore, the duty of the police and the administration to arrange full security at the Open Air Theatre to facilitate the general public which came for recreation, he said.

The artists all over the world are considered as ambassadors of peace and love but unfortunately in Hyderabad, they were humiliated by the police and the administration, Mr Ramesh Kumar said.

Source: Dawn

Date:6/4/2009