Bengal govt to promote artistes, help them earn livelihood

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Kolkata, Nov 22 (PTI) The West Bengal government has decided to promote artistes and performers to ensure that they get to earn their livelihood, amid the pandemic-induced crisis.

Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay said on Saturday that there won't be any ceiling on the number of people who could attend open air shows and programmes, provided they adhere to COVID-19 guidelines.

'The state government is in favour of promoting artistes involved in different form of arts, such as jatra, stag theatre, recitation, so that they get the maximum opportunity to earn a livelihood,' Bandopadhyay said.

Last month, the government had granted permission to reopen cinema halls and theatres.

'In closed theatres, there is a restriction on the number of people who could attend the show. In case of open air auditoriums, however, there is no such restriction. We want the artistes to make the most of this opportunity,' the chief secretary said.

There are lakhs of performers in the state who are finding it difficult to eke out a living, and the government is sympathetic towards their plight, he said.

'We have asked the Kolkata Commissioner of Police, the DG and all district magistrates, SPs to allow open-air theatre performances, while maintaining COVID-19 safety protocols,' he added. PTI SCH RMS RMS