Terming the budgetary allocation for cultural sector “contradictory” to the government’s current policy, Sammilita Sangskritik Jote yesterday demanded to keep at least one percent of the total budget for the sector instead of the proposed 0.11 percent.
They came up with the demand at a press conference at Dhaka University’s Teacher-Student Centre.
While reading out a statement, Golam Kuddus, president of the cultural organisation, alleged that the sector has been ignored in the national budget and the allocation is highly inadequate.
“We all feel the importance of promoting and practising our culture. Creating a nationwide cultural awakening is vital for establishing a humanitarian society. But in this year’s proposed budget, the cultural sector was badly ignored,” read the statement.
The allocation in this sector is Tk 50 crore less than that of last year’s revised budget. Hopefully, necessary budgetary allocation will be given to the sector, it added.
The platform also placed 11 demands which include establishing Shilpakala Academy at upazila levels; turning local clubs into cultural organisations; constructing a “modern” auditorium for every five lakh people in Dhaka and other cities; building digital cinema halls at upazila levels; providing monthly honorarium to artists; providing financial incentives to national-level cultural federations to celebrate birth anniversary of the Father of the Nation.
Theatre icon Ramendu Majumder and noted singer Fakir Alamgir were also present at the event.