Panel to submit report soon in Chandramohan case

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Vadodara/Ahmedabad, Oct 24 (UNI) The three-member panel ''Sathya Sodhak Samiti'', appointed by state Governor Nawal Kishore Sharma to probe the Chandramohan painting episode at the MS University, would submit its report to the governor by October end.

The panel, comprising Gujarat Vidyapith vice-chancellor Dr Sudarshan Iyengar, Mr Haku Shah and Prof Y K Alagh, had already recorded statements of 81 people, including students, professors and respected citizens of Vadodara. the report has been submitted to MSU Chancellor Mrunali Devi Puwar for her comments.

The panel was given the brief to go into the incident involving a student artist's right to freedom of expression.

Chandramohan, a fine arts post-graduate student of the Maharaja Sayajirao University was arrested in May this year for ''hurting public sentiments'' through his allegedly 'obscene' exhibits of Vishnu and Jesus Christ. He was later released on a bond while 23 more students, who came out in his support, too were arrested and released on bail later.

The uproar followed after an ex-VHP member and a local advocate Neeraj Jain had filed a complaint with police against Chandramohan for ''hurting public sentiments'' following which he was arrested.

Some Christian groups too had objected to the art works.

The arrest of Chandramohan led to widespread protests from students and teachers alike with the dean of Fine Arts department, Shivaji Panikkar being suspended after he refused to close the controversial art exhibition.

In this background, Governor, Mr Sharma had set up a three-member fact-finding panel.

Speaking to UNI today, Gujarat Vidyapith Vice Chancellor Sudarshan Iyengar said that the report, as soon as it is received from the MSU Chancellor Ms Puwar, would be sent to the Governor and this is likely to happen by October 31.


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