Questions were raised during a public discussion in Bijapur on Tuesday, as to why veteran litterateurs including 3 Jnanpith awardees, and actors remained absent for 79th Akhila Bharata Kannada Sahitya Sammelana, stayed away from the event.
Expressing his disappointment over veteran writers giving the literary festival a miss, Ko. Chennabasappa, Sammelana president, said this was the only forum through which commoners could see and meet them.
Speaking with reporters on Tuesday, Chennabasappa noted that veteran writers spirit towards Kannada language and land was dissipating in recent years.
“There was a time when all writers considered attending such events as their moral and compulsory responsibility,” he said.
The absence of cinema and TV actors from the event got tongues wagging. Writer JM Rajashekhar said they only use this platform to market their products.
While Jnanpith awardees UR Ananthamurthy and Chandrashekhara Kambar were said to be unwell, another awardee, Girish Karnad, was also not seen. Karnad had attended Sahitya Sambhrama in Dharwad early this month.
A small screen director told DNA organisers had failed to invite anyone from the industry. Shooting down such remarks, another director, B Suresh said one should not wait for an invite to attend such Kannadiga events.
“Around 65 members of small screen industry attended the Sammelana, but as they are lesser known names people could not recognise them,” he said, adding that pre-decided schedules make it was difficult for bulk participation of the industry at the sammelana.