Mamata angry after WB's Republic Day tableau is rejected
WB CM Mamata Banerjee has been consistent in her annoyance with the BJP-led NDA government. The latest contention is WB's tableau being rejected from the Republic Day parade. She claimed this to be an insult to Bengal's people. She jibed, "The theme of our tableau was unity. We wanted to show that only harmony can ensure peace. Is that why our tableau was rejected?"
What is the process of the tableau selection?
States send their theme proposals to a Ministry of Defense (MoD) committee, comprising of eminent scholars, artists and experts. Subsequently, they invite bids for designing/preparing the tableau. Reportedly, quotes go well over Rs. 1cr and teams get about two months to prepare. Rejections by the MoD committee can be because of states promoting their governance model (which Centre might not want) or bad aesthetics.
Now, why is Mamata angry?
With a veiled reference to BJP, Mamata said divisions are being created among people of different faiths. She lamented that though the state's folk culture tableaux were awarded in 2014 and 2016, the Kanyashree project tableau for girl children was rejected in 2015. Kanyashree had apparently been awarded by UN. Attacking Modi, Mamata said only those who accept different opinions become great leaders.
Is this the first time Bengal's tableau has been rejected?
Bengal's tableau has been rejected earlier. Senior bureaucrats state that tableaux during Left Front's 34-year rule met a similar fate. But, neither Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee nor Jyoti Basu raised this issue. But, as is her style, Mamata won't take this rejection lightly.
Meanwhile, other states have also had their tableaux rejected
Other states have also suffered rejection. In 2017, MP's Sanchi Stupa tableau, with the theme of spreading Buddha's message of peace/love, was rejected. In 2016, Kerala's Lord Ayyappa tableau had made it to the model and music stage but failed to clear the final stage. However, Delhi holds the dubious record of having a tableau only 11 times in the last 25 years.