Marathi Sahitya Mahamandal President quits two days before literary meet

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 10 Jan 2019 10:11:02


Staff Reporter,

Elkunchwar, Dwadashiwar, Wagh say ‘no’ to inaugurate the meet

Chief Minister also not likely to attend the inaugural session of the meet due to national meet of BJP in Delhi

The controversy over withdrawal of invitation to noted English language author Nayantara Sahgal, has claimed its first casualty. Dr Shripad Bhalchandra Joshi, President of Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Mahamandal, put in his papers on Wednesday.

While resigning from the post of President of Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Mahamandal, which organises the annual Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Sammelan, Dr Joshi alleged that he was portrayed as a ‘villain’ in the entire episode. He expressed his strong displeasure over the ‘blame game’ being played and ‘shirking of responsibility’ for withdrawal of invitation to Sahgal. He said, “As no one was taking responsibility for the decision, I have decided to accept the moral responsibility for the entire episode, in the capacity of President of the Mahamandal and resigning.”

Dr Joshi e-mailed his resignation to Vidya Deodhar, Vice-President of Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Mahamandal. As per the Constitution of the Mahamandal, now it has befallen on Deodhar to take charge till the new President is elected. However, she faces an uphill task. For, Dr Joshi’s resignation has come at a time when only two days are remaining for 92nd Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Sammelan to commence at Yavatmal.

Further, as the national meet of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is scheduled in Delhi on January 11 and January 12, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis also is not likely to attend the inauguration of the 92nd Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Sammelan.

Before his resignation, the Mahamandal reportedly discussed the names of Mahesh Elkunchwar, Suresh Dwadashiwar, Vitthal Wagh. However, none of the three was willing to inaugurate the literary meet. There are other names also, but no consensus was achieved over any particular name. As a result, who would inaugurate the meet was not clear.

Meanwhile, Dr Joshi’s resignation has evoked mixed reactions. A section described it as ‘escape route’ taken by him, and another called it ‘unfortunate’. Despite the resignation, however, the controversy surrounding the coveted Marathi literary meet did not end. Raju Shetti, Member of Parliament, added a new twist to the tale by saying, “Barring a few, how many of the litterateurs have shown sensitivity to highlight the issues of farmers? Will the issues concerning the farmers be discussed in the Sammelan?”

Prof Ghanshyam Darne, Secretary of the organising committee of the Sammelan, told mediapersons at Yavatmal that the name of new President of Mahamandal and that of the dignitary who will inaugurate the meet, would be finalised in a meeting of the Mahamandal to be held in Yavatmal on Thursday.