Letter out proving Ranjith’s claim of not holding parallel meeting untrue; infighting at State Chalachitra Academy reaches new low

Ranjith. Photo: Manorama Online

Thiruvananthapuram: The severe infighting within the State Chalachitra Academy has come out in the open after the details of a letter written by nine academy council members, who sought the removal of Ranjith as its Chairman, to Culture Minister Saji Cherian now coming out.

The same has burst the claims of Ranjith that no parallel meeting was held against him and there is no need for him to tender his resignation. The council members themselves have now openly admitted to holding the meeting and sending the letter containing the decisions taken in it.

Nine of the 15-member executive council convened a parallel meeting the other day and sent the letters to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Saji Cherian, and Chalachitra academy secretary, demanding that either Ranjith should change his “autocratic” style of functioning or he be ousted.

However, Ranjith said at a press conference the other day that such a meeting being held was a media creation and there was no division in the academy. He added that Kukku Parameswaran, Sohan Seenulal, and Sibi K Thomas, who reportedly attended that parallel meeting, called the academy secretary and made it clear that they had not attended the meeting and would not act against the academy. However, a letter with the signatures of other members indicating that Kukku Parameswaran, Sohan Seenulal, and Sibi K Thomas participated in the online meeting has surfaced.

In the letter, action is demanded against Sreevidya, a temporary employee of the academy, who allegedly insulted Kukku Parameswaran, a member of the general council, during the film festival activities. The academy chairman took an arbitrary and anti-democratic stand towards Kukku Parameswaran on the issue. According to the letter, the chairman had ordered her in harsh language to stop the festival work and go home. Moreover, the chairman is constantly making comments, statements, and actions that bring disrepute to the academy and the government. In this context, the letter signed by the members asked either to correct the chairman or remove him from his post.

Meanwhile, Ranjith said the remarks about director Dr Biju were his personal opinion in a friendly conversation held on the veranda of his house. Close on its heels, council members N Arun, Manoj Kana, Mummy Century, Shaibu Mundakkal and Prakash Sreedhar made their protest public, rejecting Ranjith’s contentions. "Ranjith is behaving like a dictator. He has contempt for everybody. We are forced to answer the cheap comments he is making. The Academy is not Varikkassery Mana to demonstrate his feudal character. The film festival is going on well, not because the chairman is the Aram Thampuram (the feudal lord). Each council member is discharging his/her duties in an efficient manner," the members said.

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