Actor-filmmaker Amol Palekar, who was invited as the chief guest for an exhibition, was asked by the organisers to refrain from criticizing the Government and instead ‘stick to the topic’. The actor and his wife Sandhya Gokhale addressed the media after the incident yesterday.
Just got this video of one of my favourite actors, Amol Palekar, being cut off while ruing the loss of independence in art at @mumbai_ngma simply because he seemed critical of a Ministry of Culture/NGMA decision.
— Annu Tandon (@AnnuTandonUnnao) February 9, 2019
“The curator of the exhibition, Jesal Thacker, asked me to stick to talking about Barwe and not digress from the theme. It isn’t that I wasn’t speaking about Barwe,” said Palekar while addressing the press, according to an NDTV report.
Amol Palekar was invited by the National Gallery of Modern Art as the chief guest for an exhibition of the renowned artist Prabhakar Barwe. Palekar was interrupted by the organizers when he tried to bring to the notice of the attendees that the Ministry of Culture was scrapping the advisory committee at the gallery’s Mumbai and Bengaluru centres.
“Many of you may not know that this retrospective will be the last show that is decided by the advisory committee of local artists and not by some bureaucrat or an agent of the government with an agenda of either moral policing or proliferation of certain art commensurate with an ideological incline,” he said.
“As of November 13, 2018, the artistes’ advisory committees operating at both regional centers i.e. at Mumbai and Bangalore have been abolished, is what I have learnt! I am in the process of officially inquiring about the details so as to verify the hearsay.” It was here that Palekar was interrupted by a gallery member who asked him to stick to the topic.
Palekar, who then cut short his speech, referred to an incident pertaining to writer Nayanthara Sahgal. The writer’s invite to a literary meet in Yavatmal was withdrawn by the organizers who wanted to prevent any untoward incidents.
“Are we creating the same situation here? You are asking me not to speak? I will not speak. I asked them ‘are you censoring my speech’,” Palekar asked before winding up his speech.
Image Courtesy: Telegraph India