BANGALORE: The progress of two projects related to theatre — National School of Drama, Bangalore, and Gubbi Veeranna Rangamandira, Gubbi — is almost at a standstill, thanks to the lack of importance given to art by the central and state governments.
In the first case, a Regional Resource Centre of National School of Drama (NSD) was established in Bangalore in 1994 to “decentralise the extension programmes conducted by NSD and to make NSD more accessible to theatre workers in the Southern states”.
After years of promising a full-fledged NSD in Bangalore, on March 2, 2011, Union Minister of Culture Kumari Selja announced in the Parliament that the Ministry was working on a proposal to set up five new regional centres of NSD including Bangalore.
She said that the Bangalore centre was already operational on an ad hoc basis and will be established after suitable space is provided by the state government.
Several theatre personalities even went on a fast seeking allotment of land in Bangalore.
In June, 2011, Rajya Sabha member and theatre person B Jayashree said that Karnataka government informed her of three acres to be allotted near Kalagrama to establish NSD.
“Two acres belonging to the Indira Gandhi National College (IGNC) and one acre belonging to the Government of Karnataka near Kalagrama, behind Kuvempu Bhasha Kendra, have been set aside for this purpose.
On receiving this information, I immediately informed Director of National School of Drama Dr Anuradha Kapoor,” she had told Express.
Academic classes are supposed to begin in 2012-13, but no work has started on the project.
When Express spoke to Suresh Anagalli, Assistant Director (RRC Bangalore), he confirmed that work has not started on the project and that they were waiting for money.
“We need to see the budget submitted by the Central government and consider the money allocated towards this project.
More information on this subject can be given only by the director of NSD,” he said.
Theatre in Gubbi:
The second project is the theatre in Gubbi, near Tumkur.
Jayashree had announced last year that a theatre with a seating capacity of 350 will come up at Gubbi, the birth place of Kannada theatre legend Gubbi Veeranna, who is also her grandfather.
An amount of `25 lakh had been released from the MP’s fund for the Rs 2.43crore project.
She had then said that the Chief Minister had agreed to allocate Rs 1 crore towards the project.
But, a person working on this project said that the money was yet to be allotted.
However, B Jayashree, who is in Delhi to attend the Parliament session, was unavailable for comment.
Director of the Department of Kannada and Culture Manu Baligar declined to comment on the progress of both the projects citing ongoing Assembly session.