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The 65th National Film Awards is all set to be given today by the President of India, Ram Nath Kovind and reports state that a lot of winners have decided to skip the event as the President will personally present the award only to 11 winners and the rest will not be given by the President. Upset by this, many winners have decided to skip the prestigious event as they feel disrespected.
Omerta director Hansal Mehta opened up by saying that winners feel humiliated by this as it's a big recognition to bag the award from the President's hand. He was quoted as saying to Indian Express, "It's extremely disappointing. It's unfair. Not to undermine any Minister but it's the biggest recognition that an artiste gets from his or her nation and it's given by the President. These winners had already reached Delhi and they were in the middle of their rehearsals when they were informed. That's humiliating."
The winners expressed their disappointment to Shekhar Kapur and he requested them to attend the event and stated that an announcement on the regard will be made shortly. Sandeep Pampally, who won the Best Jasari Film National Award for Sinjar, said, "Yesterday, during rehearsals we got to know that not all awards will be presented by the President and then the winners decided to boycott the ceremony."
He further commented, "Today, Shekhar Kapur met with the upset winners and they requested him that they should be awarded by the President. Shekhar Kapur has said that there will be a decision made. But there's no clarity as to what will finally happen."
However, whether all the National Film Awards will be presented by President Ram Nath Kovind or not, is yet to be announced.