Amratya – son of Chaiti Ghosal – was a student at FTII
Despite being under the jurisdiction of the central government, the Pune Film Institute (Film and Television Institute of India) has decided to increase the annual fees for its students, leading to discontent and protests among the students. The protest is being led by a prominent Bengali director and actor, Armatya Ray, son of actress Chaiti Ghoshal.
Interestingly, Armatya Ray has already made a mark in Bollywood during his college days at FTII. He will soon be seen in Ajay Devgn’s ambitious project, Maidaan – a biopic of legendary football coach Syed Abdul Rahim. Besides being an actor or director, he is known for his political consciousness. Now, he is at the forefront of the protest at the FTII.
This is not the first time that students have protested against fee hikes in an educational institution. Earlier, when students at Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru University were agitating against hostel fee hikes, the protest at the Pune Film Institute also gained momentum. Leading the movement was Amartya Ray, a student in the Direction Department of the respective university.
Speaking to the media, Amartya said, “Every year, the fees are increasing at an unnatural rate. Despite being under the jurisdiction of the central government, we are required to pay Rs 10,000 as an entrance exam fee. Back in 2017, when I appeared for the exam, the entrance fee was only half of that amount. And within just two years, by 2019, it jumped to Rs 10,000. The institute comes up with various schemes to extract money from the students. If we protest, the college authorities suppress us. This cannot go on. That’s why we have been compelled to initiate this protest.”
The students’ agitation at the Pune Film Institute highlights the ongoing issue of rising education costs in India and the need for affordable and accessible education for all. As the protest gains momentum, it remains to be seen how the college authorities and the government respond to the student’s demands.