Government replaces the board of IGNCA
The Central government designated a new board of trustees to the Indira Gandhi Centre for the Arts or IGNCA. Padma Shri winner journalist Ram Bahadur Rai will replace Congress-appointed Chinmaya Gharekhan, as the head of the institute. This prestigious establishment was set up in the memory of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by Rajiv Gandhi during his tenure as the PM.
The Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts was launched by the late Prime Minister Shri Rajiv Gandhi on 19 November 1985. Located in New Delhi, the IGCNA was visualised as a hub for the learning and practice of all kinds of arts. The IGCNA also undertakes research and publication. It also provides space for other cultural events.
The first trustees of IGNCA were "Shri Rajiv Gandhi, Shri R. Venkataraman, Shri P.V. Narasimha Rao, Smt. Pupul Jayakar, the Finance Minister of 1987, Shri H. Y. Sharada Prasad and Dr. Kapila Vatsyayan."
The new trust appointed by the Centre comprises of 19 other members. Some of them are "classical dancer Sonal Mansingh, lyricist Prasoon Joshi, artist Vasudeo Kamath and Union Culture Ministry Secretary." The Ministry also designated head of School of Studies in Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology in Ujjain's Vikram University- Dr Sushmita Pandey, as the chairman of the National Monument Authority.
Chinmaya Gharekhan, the former president of IGNCA, a former Indian diplomat, said there was no mystery in the reconstitution of the board. Downplaying the reconstitution of the trust he said that "all successive" governments had done so in the past. Gharekhan said he had been expecting this and had wondered why BJP-led coalition which is at the helm of country's affairs hadn't reconstituted sooner.
Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma, who signed off on the decision defended the government's decision saying it had been done in public interest. Sharma said, "Ram Bahadur is a well-known journalist and deserving as well. Such people will increase the fame of the institute." He said the government was changing things "as it had come with the intention of bringing changes."