Tahir Nadeem Khan Yusafzai
Bhaderwah, Nov 03 : Students of 18 higher educational institutions took to the stage to rake up various social issues particularly related to gender and domestic violence as the final round of 'Natya Utsav' (playfest) came to a close in Jammu University's Bhaderwah campus on Thursday.
The students belonging to Jammu University, its satellite campuses and government degree colleges performed 18 skits dealing with issues ranging from gender inequality, child labour, girl education, social media, environment, corruption, health issues and domestic violence.
The 'Natya Utsav' was first of its kind playfest organised in the Chenab region in association with the Indian Army and was held at Lal-Ded auditorium of the campus.
The plays in Urdu, Hindi and Dogri essentially focussed on fighting social evils and spreading awareness.
Using very basic props and music, the performers exuded confidence while exhibiting some raw talent in singing, dancing and acting.
Head of Krishi Vigyan Kendra Bhaderwah, Dr Amit Charak,who was heading the panel of judges, was all praise for the students. "We always support such events where youngsters get an opportunity to showcase their talent. It was great to see the spirit of healthy competition among the youth from the length and breadth of Jammu and Kashmir," he said. "All of them did a great job," he added.
The preliminary round saw 34 performances fighting it out for a place among top contenders.
Another judge, Dr Ghansham Jha said that such platforms allow students to showcase their skills. "There should be no pressure on students to win each time and they must be allowed to enjoy performance," he stressed.
Dr Rubia Bukhari from the varsity's Poonch campus said that it was great to see so many children take the stage at a time when the theatre is viewed as an extra-curricular activity. "Art that becomes part of children’s life early makes them wholesome, grounded and happy," she said.
While Government Degree College(GDC), Chatroo emerged as the winner, Jammu University was the first runner-up, followed by GDC, Udhampur and Trikuta College as joint runners up for the third spot.