The English Vinglish director and the Oscar-winning costume designer won at the fourth Laadli Media Awards for Gender Sensitivity
Filmmaker Gauri Shinde received the Laadli award for the Best Mainline Hindi Film for her directorial debut English Vinglish, while Oscar-winning costume designer Bhanu Athaiya got honoured for lifetime achievement.
Shinde says she will keep making films that showcase emotions which both men and women can relate to. “I‘m very happy to have received the award. I feel it is a big honour. I did not expect to win it,” she said at the ceremony held on Tuesday, February 5 at the Tata Theatre, National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), Mumbai. “I didn’t make English Vinglish keeping in mind women centric issues. I will keep making films which showcase emotions which both men and women can relate to,” she added.
This was the fourth edition of the Laadli Media Awards for Gender Sensitivity, organised by NGO Population First. The objective of the awards is to felicitate media, journalists and advertising professionals who have made a difference in gender sensitive issues through their work.
Talking about making films on gender specific issues, Shinde said, “Films basically entertain audiences. While entertaining, if they are able to say something, then why not?” Her English Vinglish probed the dilemma of a housewife, brilliantly portrayed by Sridevi, who is not fluent in English and how she gets rid of the handicap and surprises everyone. The filmmaker admits films can’t directly help such causes. “I don’t know if films can directly help such causes, but even if a movie makes a difference and a few people get effected, then it is an achievement,” she said.
Athaiya was honoured at the event with the Laadli Lifetime Achievement Award. A delighted Athaiya said, “I’m so happy to get this award. I’m glad it happened.”
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Other celebrities present at the event were singer Sunita Rao, film directors Ashutosh Gowariker, Sudhir Mishra and R Balki, Bollywood actor Pooja Bedi, Professor Nandini Sardesai, Rajashree Birla were also present. The event was hosted by TV journalist Barkha Dutt. Author and columnist Ranjit Lal got a Special Award for Best Book – Fiction for Faces in the Water – based on the issue of female infanticide. Veteran advertising professional Sylvester da Cunha received a Special Award for our Laadli moppet, the Amul baby girl. Classical singer Shubha Mudgal performed a few songs on women’s empowerment. Choreographer Shiamak Davar’s troupe of children also performed.
With inputs from IANS