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Author C Radhakrishnan resigns as eminent member of Sahitya Akademi

KOCHI: Author C Radhakrishnan has resigned as an eminent member of the Sahitya Akademi on Monday, alleging attempts to politicise the national academy dedicated to the promotion of literature.

The incident that provoked the writer happened on March 11, when the annual Festival of Letters organised by the Sahitya Akademi was inaugurated by Union minister of State for Culture Arjun Ram Meghwal. Alleging that the decision to allow a minister to inaugurate the annual festival was an attempt to politicise the administration, Radhakrishnan said it will erode the independent stature of the Akademi.

“This is the fist time such a thing has happened in the long chequered history of the Sahitya Akademi which consistently upheld the autonomy of the institution against pressures to make it yield to political clout. True, last year a lesser official, a minister of state, had taken part in the inaugural session of the Festival, inviting protests from all of us. Assurances were given then that this would not repeat. Hope you remember the unrelenting struggle we put up against efforts to influence the Akademi politically while I was a member of the Executive Committee for five years,” Radhakrishnan wrote in the resignation letter sent to Akademi secretary K Sreenivasa Rao.

Clarifying that he is not against any political party, Radhakrishnan said he can’t stand a silent witness to the funeral of the very last democratically autonomous institution of culture in the nation.

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