Culture

Voices against Intolerance

WHAT do you do on an evening of dissent? You dance, you draw, you perform and yes, you sing. For as the vibrant banners, strung at the annual SAHMAT cultural event, reminded us of Bertolt Brecht’s iconic words, “Yes, there will be singing about the dark times.” But you also speak.

JANAM Commemorates Safdar Hashmi’s Life & Works

JANUARY 1, 2016 marked the 27th year of commemorating Safdar Hashmi’s life and works at the site of his attack, and subsequent death from injuries sustained, in Jhandapur by the CITU and the Jana Natya Manch (Janam). The interrupted Halla Bol show finished on January 4 that year, is marked with a new production by Janam each year, along with a roster of revolutionary songs and speeches. This year too the programme, with Badal Saroj as the chief guest, was a careful selection of acts in solidarity with the workers’ movement, with one major exception.

KARNATAKA: Writers of Four States who have Returned Awards Meet in Dharwad

ON November 27, a unique meet was held in Dharwad, the place where Prof Kalburgi was recently murdered. Writers who had returned their awards to Sahitya Akademi and various other academics and government servants from four states came together to tell the people why they had returned their awards. The occasion was the birthday of Prof Kalburgi. A group of writers from Gujarat under the leadership of Dr Ganesh Devy who had returned his Sahitya Akademi and Padma Sri awards, started a yatra from their state which they called Dakshinayan.

Gurajada Death Centenary Marked across Andhra Pradesh

THE death centenary of great poet Gurajada Appa Rao was observed across Andhra Pradesh. Various programmes were organised by AIDWA and Prajanatya Mandali, with the help of the CPI(M) units, in different parts of the state. Various cultural organisations also participated in these events. The commemoration started on Gurjada’s birth anniversary on September 21 and continued till the death centenary on November 30.

‘Uphold the Law and Allow Free and Fearless Expression of Views’

Below we reproduce an open letter from historians and social scientists of India at academic institutions overseas to the president, the prime minister and central government, the governors and ministers of different state governments, and the chief justice and other justices of the Supreme Court and High Courts of India. The letter is dated November 8, 2015.

Writers Rise in Protest against Growing Intolerance And Attack on Freedom of Expression

Decrying the rising intolerance and attack on the freedom of expression in the country as manifested by incidents such as the murder MM Kalburgi, Govind Pansare, Narendra Dabholkar and the lynching of Mohd Akhlaq, many eminent writers, as a mark of protest, have returned their Sahitya Akademi Awards or have resigned from the posts they held in the Sahitya Akademi. They have written to the president of the  Akademi on why they have returned the award or resigned from various positions. Below we publish the excerpts from their letters.

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