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Cong flays taking down NRC-CAA linked art works in Goa

Panaji

21-December-2019

 Main Opposition party in Goa, Congress, on Saturday condemned the decision of the organisers of the Serendipity Arts Festival to take down art installations with oblique references to the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens, which have triggered protests in several parts of the country.

"It is strange that those who are exposing acts of the government aimed at dividing society, are themselves being branded as divisive and banned from expressing their thoughts. A person who is explaining that this (CAA) is a divisive Act has become the accused?" Congress spokesperson Trajano D'Mello told reporters in Panaji.

"Victims are being made the accused. We condemn this act of banning the artist's works from public view," D'Mello also said.

On Wednesday (Dec. 18), two artworks by well-known contemporary artist Sudarshan Shetty, with oblique references to turmoil in the northeastern regions and the CAA, were abruptly closed for viewing by the organisers of the ongoing Serendipity Arts Festival.

One of the exhibits involved electronic broadcasting of Miyah poetry, by Dalit and some poets of from the North East, which articulates anxieties faced by the Muslim community in the region, which is most affected by protests against the CAA and the National Register of Citizens, was suddenly off limits for viewing on Wednesday, the fourth day of the festival.

The other exhibit, which was barred for visitors at the festival, involved innovative showcasing of ink aupcycled' from carbon from air-pollution emissions and enables carbon-negative printing and production.

As part of the immersive experience offered by the curator, visitors could scribble graffitis of their choice with the help of pens loaded with the unique black ink on empty canvases.

Shetty, in a statement issued here, has expressed pain and has bemoaned the lack of freedom in art spaces.

Organisers of the festival have not been available for comment on the issue.IANS