On Friday, not only was a screening of Vivek Agnihotri’s Buddha In A Traffic Jam cancelled at the JadavpurUniversity, clashes between two groups of students broke out over the cancellation.
Anupam who is in Ranchi shooting for a film was unable to be present at Jadavpur when the screening was supposed to happen. He expresses concern and distress over the politicization of educational institutions.
“This was a show on the invitation of the students of Jadavpur University. So I can’t see why it was cancelled. Once it was cancelled I don’t know why matters were allowed to get out of hand. Obviously some people are uncomfortable with the film which shows how students are brainwashed into believing in anti-national politics,” says Anupam who feels students should keep away from politics.
“Kanahaiya Kumar is on a fast unto death. He is behaving like a hard boiled politics. He should be focusing only on his studies,” says Anupam drily.
He dismisses all talk of “molestation” during the Jadavpur incident. “This is typical ‘if-you-can’t-beat-them-malign-them’ mentality. Whenever a clash of ideology happens the ones beaten at their own game cry foul. I am not sure of what happened at Jadavpur because I wasn’t there. But my director Vivek Agnihotri was present.And he says nothing of this sort happened.
Anupam admits Buddha At The Traffic Jam which releases next week is benefiting from the current political scenario in the country. “Vivek had the script with him for four years. It took him a great deal of time and effort to make this film. When I agreed to be a part of Buddha In A Traffic Jam I never knew it would pre-empt what is happening in JNU and Jadavpur. I am glad I did the film. Cinema should and must provoke and prod the conscience awake.”
He dismisses all speculation on joining politics. “I am not part of any political party. Nor am I planning to become a politician.I am not angling for a seat in the Rajya Sabha. But then six months or a year from now things may be different.So I am ruling out politics for now. Who knows about later?”