RAJAHMUNDRY: The state government is encouraging theatre arts in various forms and also striving for the wellbeing of stage artistes. As part of it, ‘Nandi Natakotsavams’ have been introduced by chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu during his last tenure in 1998 when Rajahmundry MP Maganti Murali Mohan was the chairman of Film Development Corporation (FDC). Since then, the FDC has been putting its best efforts to strengthen theatre arts, district public relations officer and information department assistant director M Francis has said.
Francis told TNIE that the government is giving remuneration ranging from Rs 20,000 to 40,000 to the participants of ‘Nandi Natakotsavams’ for performing padya natakams, social plays and children’s plays. It is also presenting Nandi Awards and cash prizes to the best plays, best actor, etc.
The government has enhanced the monthly pension amount of stage artistes from Rs 500 to 1,500, which benefitted as many as 525 aged artistes in East Godavari district. It is also issuing identity cards to the artistes. Meanwhile, the stage artistes are seeking concession for travelling in RTC buses, which will be taken to the notice of the government. At present, the artistes are enjoying 50 per cent concession in trains for a journey of above 300 km, the DPRO informed.
The ongoing ‘Nandi Natakotasavms’ are being conducted for 2013 and 2014 years from May 16 to 30 wherein 2,500 artistes from 84 ‘nataka samajams’ in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are participating. Chief minister Naidu will present the Nandi Awards in an impressive programme to be held at Subramanya Mydanam on May 30, he explained.
The government renovated Sri Venkateswara Anam Kala Kendram with an amount of Rs 1.60 crore by providing air-conditioner, lighting, sound, screens, stage, seating, etc. Of the total, Reliance Industries Limited donated `1.10 crore and the remaining amount was arranged from MP, MLA funds and Anam Industries. Collector H Arun Kumar issued orders for constituting a management committee for the auditorium, which is the best of its kind in the state with 820 seating capacity and latest facilities, he added.