Attack on theatre group ‘Samudaya’ near Bangalore


We, theatre persons, writers, poets, scholars and concerned citizens, strongly condemn the brutal attack on the street theatre group Samudaya on May 1, 1999 by BJP hoodlums, at Anekal, a taluka town near Bangalore.

Samudaya had been conducting a communal harmony campaign since April 18 by taking out a Kala Jatha all over Karnataka. As a part of this programme a performance was scheduled at Anekal which has a BJP councillor, and falls in the assembly and parliamentary constituency, both of which are held by the BJP. At 11.30 am Mr. Nagaraj, the local BJP councillor, led a group of 30 hoodlums and brutally attacked the Samudaya group with iron rods, stones and razor blades. Three persons have been seriously injured. Samudaya vice


president C. Gundanna, who is also a member of the Karnataka Sangeet Natak Akademi, was hit with a iron rod on the head and was seriously injured. The hoodlums also tried to rip open his abdomen with a razor blade but the thick khadi shirt he was wearing saved him.

Attacks on creative persons and creative activity are nothing new for the Sangh Parivar. The present instance is one of a piece with the earlier attacks on artists like M.F. Husain, Jatin Das, cartoonist Irfan Husain, the film Fire, and threats held out to the Academy of Fine Arts & Literature in the heart of the capital.

We condemn the attack on Samudaya and appeal to all to resist the perpetration of such acts.