South Indian film industry witnessed one of the biggest film events in the history as the bigwigs of Indian cinema graced the four-day event to commemorate the biggest achievements in Indian cinema. The function was kick-started on September 21 at the Jawaharhal Nehru Stadium in Chennai. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister inaugurated the function along with the yesteryear actresses like Saroja Devi and Simran.
On the opening day, 59 legends from Tamil film industry were felicitated by the state government, which granted Rs 10 crores for the function. Actors, technicians, including music composers, directors and others were honoured on the first day. Sivakumar, Jamuna, MN Rajaram, Jayasudha, SS Rajendran, Sowcar Janaki and many others from acting department were bestowed upon with the awards.
Rajinikanth, Meena, Trisha Krishnan, Simran, Vivek from the current generation were also honoured. On the second day, there were performances from the artists from Kannada and Telugu film fraternites. Well, legendary actor Kamal Hassan took away the limelight on the day after making a sensational statement. The Universal Star, addressing Kannada film industry, said that he wants to belong to Sandalwood. He loves Karnataka and he has many friends in the state. (Inputs from IANS)
Kamal Hassan's humble statement was overwhelmingly welcomed by the Kannadigas.
Controversy overshadowed on the third day as Telugu filmmaker S Narayana Murthy criticised the organisers on stage. He had blamed the organisers for not honouring legends like K Vishwanath and many others.
Last Day Dhamaka
However, on the last day, there were a lots of events that drew the public attention. As many as 41 legends of Indian cinema such as Amitabh Bachchan and K Balachander were felicitated by President Pranab Mukherjee at the centenary celebrations of Indian cinema on the last day.
President Presents Medallions
The president, who presided over the valedictory function of the four-day mega event on Tuesday, presented the medallions to the awardees.
12 Industries Honoured
Artists from 12 industries - Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi, Bengali, Gujarati, Marathi, Punjabi, Odiya, Assamese and Bhojpuri - were honoured.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, former actress, was the first recipient of the award.
From the Tamil industry, legends such as AVM Saravanan, MS Vishwanathan, Vyjyanthimala Bali and K Balachander were awarded, while veterans Anjali Devi, K Vishwanath, K Raghavendra Rao, Lakshmi Naryana Sattiraju aka Bapu were honoured from the Telugu film fraternity.
Awards were given to Parvathamma Rajkumar, Bharati Vishnuvardhan, Ambareesh, SV Rajendra Singh Babu, BS Dwarakesh, Ravichandran and Veeranna from the Kannada film industry.
Malayalam industry legends Madhavan Nair aka Madhu, Chandran, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Kunchako Gopal, Mammootty and Mohanlal were also honoured.
From Bollywood, Amitabh, Sridevi, Rekha, Javed Akthar, Ramesh Sippy, Kiran V Shantaram, Randhir Kapoor, Vinay Kumar Chumble and Kamal Warchatiya received the awards.
Two Marathi artists Ramesh and Seema Deo were awarded along with three Bengali artists Aparna Sen, Gautam Ghosh and Prosenjit Chaterjee.
Awards were also presented to Gujarati actor Naresh Kanodia, Punjabi actress Preeti Sapru, Odiya actor Uttam Mohanty, Bhojpuri actor Manoj Tiwari and Assamese actress Zerifa Wahid.
A special audio visual cassette commemorating the 100-year journey of Indian cinema was released on the occasion.
Tamil Nadu governor K Rosaiah released a souvenir to mark Indian cinema at 100 and presented the first copy to the president.
Speaking at the event, President Mukherjee said that "Indian cinema is incomplete without the contribution of south Indian cinema. The achievement of the South film industry at the National Film Awards over the years is proof of the development of the industry".
South Stars Remembered
The president also remembered some of the luminaries of Southern cinema such as MG Ramachandran, Sivaji Ganeshan, Dr Rajkumar, Prem Nazir and NT Rama Rao.
Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Karnataka Minister for Infrastructure Development and Information Santosh Lad were also present.
Post the closing ceremony, there was a gala cultural performance by cine stars from South India.
Amitabh Bachchan Greets...
In the event, Amitabh Bachchan greeted Ajith Kumar, Rajinikanth, Ambareesh, Vijay, Mohanlal, Mammootty and many others from the film industry.