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Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) witnessed a rare scene when its new Chairman entered the premises of his alma mater unannounced on Monday. Anupam Kher, besides his dramatic appearance, was also seen sharing a fraternal lunch with some students in the FTII canteen, while chatting informally with them. The veteran artist deliberately did not give prior information about his visit as he wished to revisit his alma mater as a student like like did 40 years ago. In his gesture to stir nostalgia, the 62-year-old remarked that he wanted to strike an optimistic note at the beginning of his tenure as Chairman. Anupam Kher was appointed

Anupam Kher was appointed chairman of the Film and Television Institute of India just last week after the position was vacant since March when the tenure of Gajendra Chauhan ended. The credentials that qualifed the celebrated artist for this prestigious post are that he has acted in more than 500 films, and has won many national and international awards. He's also a recipient of the Padma Shri in 2004 and the Padma Bhushan in 2016 for his contribution in the field of cinema and arts. He has appeared in acclaimed international films such as the 2002 Golden Globe nominated Bend It Like Beckham, 2007 Golden Lion award-winning Lust, Caution and 2013 Oscar-winning Silver Linings Playbook. He has appeared in more than 100 plays and has also authored the book 'The Best Thing about You Is You'. Anupam Kher is also a politically active figure and represents Chandigarh in the Parliament along with his wife Kirron Kher, both of BJP. Television actor Gajendra Chauhan's appointment had provoked massive protests in 2015. Chauhan was one of the most contentious Chairman in FTII's 50-year history, and that triggered intense outrage on campus. Students went on a 139-day strike and relentlessly criticised the government for appointing a man, who they claimed had neither 'stature' nor 'vision'. Kher's appointment by Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry, however, did not come as a big surprise to the students of the institute due to his party affiliation. Given his fractious association with students and institutes of learning, Kher should tread with care as he takes over the running of FTII.

Anupam Kher is also a politically active figure and represents Chandigarh in the Parliament along with his wife Kirron Kher, both of BJP. Television actor Gajendra Chauhan's appointment had provoked massive protests in 2015. Chauhan was one of the most contentious Chairman in FTII's 50-year history, and that triggered intense outrage on campus. Students went on a 139-day strike and relentlessly criticised the government for appointing a man, who they claimed had neither 'stature' nor 'vision'. Kher's appointment by Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry, however, did not come as a big surprise to the students of the institute due to his party affiliation. Given his fractious association with students and institutes of learning, Kher should tread with care as he takes over the running of FTII.

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