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Monday, July 15, 2013


If music academy has been responsible for introducing dirty politics in classical music and dance then Kalakshetra has been the culprit of bringing in sectarianism and parochialism in the great art form. In a country where people who want to start good institutes of higher studies are struggling to get even an acre of land because of the highly prohibitive rates and also lack of availability . What kalakshetra has been doing almost for the past 5 decades has been a criminla waste of tax payers money. They have also been the culprits of caging such excellent talents like Mysore Vasudevachari, Tiger Varadachary, M.D. Ramanathan etc sucking their life out, speeding their death and depriving them their limelight.

This pseudo cultural prison called kalakshetra where the inmates are fed with what they the wardens perceive as the only correct form of dance and music while the wardens swindle money in the name of art . such a huge area for an ordinary institute which teaches only classical dance and classical music is an unjustifiable luxury in a country where institutes of R&D like ISRO and DRDO operate from spaces which are not even one fourth its size.

The state government under Jayalalitha must take over and build like state trading centre for commerce and trade,a big cultural centre with many halls of many sizes with good acoustics for conducting various programs by many sabhas with children's park,public library and one film shooting studio also inside with all facilities whereby the monopoly of music academy also can be taken care of . For conducting music and dance classes we can have some acoustically well made class rooms with one small administration block. or we can think of a mini film city with some class rooms for music and dance. This will make the students of kalakshetra study music or dance and prevent them from wasting enormous time behind the trees in their very inconvenient traditional attire. We can also have a big Sanskrit and south Indian languages institute because anyway the few tamilian boys and girls in kalakshetra are made to learn malayalam. probably someone can pass on the idea to Jayalalitha or Ramoji or any big Telugu film producer .

These proposals may upset the few pseudo,hypocritical hags living either in the campass or in and around Tiruvanmiyur

Monday, 15 July 2013 | Kumar Chellappan | CHENNAI

A fraud to the tune of Rs 3 crore, that was committed during the tenure of Leela Samson as director of Kalakshetra Foundation, has come to light.
Under her directorship in 2005 to 2012, Leela Samson entered into a contract with a private company for the video documentation of the dance dramas choreographed by late Rukmini Devi Arundale, the founder of the Kalakshetra. Justice S Mohan, former Judge of the Supreme Court and the then Chairman of Kalakshetra says the contract smacks of massive irregularities and violation of basic rules.
In a letter addressed to Abhijit Sengupta, the then Cultural Secretary of the Government of India, the Justice has given a detailed account of how rules and laws of the land were blatantly violated by Leela Samson. “On 25th October 2006, Leela Samson entered into a contract with M/s Madhu Ambat Productions, Chennai, for video documentation of Rukmini Devi’s dance drams.
The contract was spread over three years and the total cost of the project was `3 crore. The contract is opposed to all canons of Governmental contracts. No tenders were invited. The chairman or no one was made aware of this contract. The director herself unilaterally entered into the contract with M/s Madhu Ambat Productions,” says the letter written by Justice Mohan. He pointed out that Samson had no legal authority either from the Government of India or from the Governing Board . Equally shocking was the observation Madhu Ambat was a person unknown in the field of documentation. According to Justice Mohan, the Financial Adviser to the Union Government had raised queries on the methodology adopted for selection of Madhu Ambat and the remuneration.
As expected the CAG found out the discrepancies. “When Leela Samson was questioned by the governing board about the objections by the FA and the CAG, she produced the original contract on the next day. She then arranged to get a back-dated stamp paper and created a fresh contract covering only six dance dramas at a cost of `90 lakh in total and eliminating the penalty, damages and termination clauses. Further investigations proved that there was a three-phase contract to the tune of `3 crore,” said Justice Mohan.
Another revelation was that the director of Kalakshetra Foundation submitted a fake contract. “The contract for the sum of `90 lakh produced by the director was a fake one. She seems to have obtained a back-dated stamp paper and typed only the documentation of six dance dramas. This clearly constitutes a fraudulent action,” says Justice Mohan’s letter, a copy of which is with The Pioneer.
The auditors of the Union Government found out yet another malpractice committed by the director. It deals with stamp papers used for signing the contracts with M/s Madhu Ambat Productions.
“The stamp papers purchased on 3-9-2006 were from Madurai from a vendor without registration number and agreement was entered into on 25th October 2006. However, another stamp paper purchased on October 25, 2006 was from a registered vendor in Chennai for the agreement entered into with the same agency on the same date. The reason for purchase of stamp paper for the contract to be entered on the same date with the same agency with different witnesses may be elucidated to audit it,” said the report.
Though Kalakshetra officials said that an explanation has been given to the CAG, the latter is not yet convinced.
Justice Mohan, who has been trained in financial matters, himself was in for more shock when he found that a private individual has been awarded contracts worth `1.2 crore under the pretext of renovation of modification of the Foundation’s kitchen and renovation of the Central Office.
The Justice wrote to Ambika Soni, the then Union Minister for Culture, but no action was taken. It is said that Soni is a close friend of Samson. “That is the reason for her appointment as chairperson of Sangeeth Natak Academy and Central Board of Film Certification. Many people asked questions about the impropriety in same person occupying three important positions in the Centre, it went unheeded as Samson is no ordinary person,” said a senior faculty member.
Awarding the documentation works to Madhu Ambat and the civil contract works to an agency has been described as irregular by the Principal Accountant General. It also found that civil works to the tune of nearly `one crore were executed without following the established tender procedures and `63 lakh were spent violating all basic norms under the pretext of up-gradation of sound system in Kalakshetra. Sound and lighting equipment worth `1 crore were also purchased without observing procedures, said the report.
The irregularities and contract appointments are made at a time when former teachers of Kalaksetra like Thomas, Balagopal, Janardhanan struggle to meet both ends of life with the pittance offered to them as pension. “My monthly pension is `800. It is what I get for serving the Foundation for more than four decades,” said Thomas.

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