|National Street Theatre Day|
April 12, the birthday of Safdar Hashmi-political activist, playwright, actor and poet has been observed as the National Street Theatre Day for the last 15 years. Safdar Hashmi was fatally attacked in broad daylight during the performance of a street play in a working class area just outside Delhi on January1, 1989. The goal of strengthening bonds of democratic unity among creative people was one which Safdar regarded as an important focus of his aesthetic and political activities. This is being achieved in a significant manner in his memory through the activities of the Safdar Hashmi memorial Trust ( SAHMAT). The National Street Theatre day each year focuses on the theme of current concern for the creative community. The performances of hundreds of street theatre groups all over the country on April12, 2003 will express the widespread condemnation of the unjust and criminal destruction of Iraq. This will coincide with international observance of April12 as a day to condemn US and British imperialist designs.
In Delhi a cultural protest will be observed at the Vithal Bhai Patel House Lawns at New Delhi on April12 from 5pm onwards. The two street plays will be performed by Act One and Jan Natya Manch. Anti-war poetry will be sung by Susmit Bose, Madan Gopal Singh, Vidya Shah and Dhruv Sangari. Participating poets include Asad Zaidi, Ikram Khawar, Nirmala Garg, Kaseel Azar, Kedar Nath Singh, Manglesh Dabral and Zaheer Rahmati. Two bands ANAND and VISHNU run by young professionals will also perform. Artists, designers and photographers including Vivan Sundaram, Jatin Das, Arpana Caur, Enas M.J., Ram Rahman, Shamshad, Veer Munshi, Gulam Sheikh will also make art works which will be on display at the venue.