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Rebellion in Sangeet Natak Akademi
April 21, 2005 19:21 IST
Sixty artistes on Thursday approached President A P J Abdul Kalam demanding immediate removal of danseuse Sonal Mansingh from the helm of the Sangeet Natak Akademi accusing her of running the organisation in an autocratic manner.
A memorandum presented to the President by the artistes, including vice-chairperson K N Pannikar and Carnatic vocalist Balamurali Krishna, said: "From day one, Sonal Mansingh went on a steamroller trip of taking unilateral decisions."
The memorandum complained about her "unconstitutional, undemocratic, unethical, unwarranted and unbecoming performance as chairperson" of the Akademi.
Mansingh, however, refuted the allegations as a "pack of lies and canards," and asserted that her only goal has been
the good of the organisation.
Three of the five government nominees to the Akademi board -- Pannikar, Balamurali Krishna and Savitri Heisnam -- have quit their posts demanding Mansingh's removal as chairperson.
The artistes have also objected to the danseuse campaigning for Narendra Modi in the 2003 Gujarat assembly election.
Alleging that Mansingh used her post to derive personal mileage, the memorandum claimed she personally edited a 30-minute CD-ROM on Indian dance, which had no mention of any contemporary dancers, including her guru Kelucharan Mohapatra.
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