What comes as another feather in his cap, veteran actor Anupam Kher has been appointed the new chairman of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), located in Pune. He has replaced former television actor Gajendra Chauhan, whose stint at the FTII was riddled with controversies.
Kher is a well-known name in the film industry, and has done over 500 films, including theatre projects. He has also previously held the post of chairman of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) and the National School of Drama.
Chauhan's controversial two-year stint, which ended in March 2017, was marked by a 139-day strike by students, who protested against what they felt was a "politically-motivated appointment" of a candidate who was "ill-qualified" to head the premier institute.
This is the second big move by Smriti Irani, Minister of Information and Broadcasting. Earlier in August, she had appointed Prasoon Joshi as the chairperson of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) by sacking Pahlaj Nihalani.
FTII has been headed by legendary film personalities including Shyam Benegal, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Saeed Mirza, Mahesh Bhatt, Mrinal Sen, Vinod Khanna and Girish Karnad in the past.
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