On the eve of the 64th Republic Day a few selected stars from the film industry have been honoured with India’s civilian awards
According to a release from the home ministry on Friday (January 25), President Pranab Mukherjee approved the names of the 108 awardees, which includes four Padma Vibhushan, 24 Padma Bhushan and 80 Padma Shri.
Rajesh Khanna, the first superstar of Indian cinema and Sharmila Tagore have been posthumously named for the Padma Bhushan, the country’s third highest civilian honour.
Between Aradhana in 1969 and Prem Kahani in 1975, Rajesh Khanna enjoyed god-like status.
The great-grand niece of Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, Sharmila’s tryst with movies began when she had just entered her teens. She was 13 when she did her first Bengali film Apur Sansar in 1959. However, the bigger recognition came when she did Kashmir Ki Kali and after that there was no looking back for her.
Sridevi who made a comeback into films last year with a strong female-centric role in English Vinglish, boasts of a filmography of 265 movies. She came back after a 15-year sabbatical, and won hearts with her simple and subtle performance in the film as a homemaker struggling to learn English. She has been honoured with a Padma Shri.
The 62-year-old Nana Patekar, who began his career in 1978 with the movie Gaman, carved a niche for himself in the Hindi films with the 1989 film Parinda for which he even won a National Award. Some of his well-known films include Krantiveer (1994), Agni Sakshi (1996), Khamoshi: The Musical, and Ab Tak Chappan (2005). He is equally active in Marathi films and has won the National Award thrice.
Ramesh Sippy made his directorial debut with 1971 romantic-drama Andaz, after working as assistant director for seven years. However, it was his cult film in 1975 Sholay that catapulted him into the big league. Sippy’s body of work as a director also includes Saagar, Shakti, Shaan and Seeta Aur Geeta.
Among the Padma Vibhushan awardees are noted scientists Yash Pal and Roddam Narasimha and artists S Haider Ali Raza and Raghunath Mohapatra.
The Padma Bhushan awardees include actors like Late Rajesh Khanna and Sharmila Tagore, Late Jaspal Bhatti, Producer Daggubati Rama Naidu, industrialist Adi Godrej, as well as sports stars Rahul Dravid and Mary Kom.
The Padma Shri winners’ list also includes playback singer Sudha Malhotra, veteran Telugu director Bapu, designer Ritu Kumar, Urdu poet Nida Fazli, wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt, boxer Dingko Singh, Magsaysay Award winner Nileema Mishra and Olympic medallist Vijay Kumar.