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4 May, 2014

Indian President Exhorts Film-makers to Reflect Deeply on their Key Messages

New Delhi, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, 03-May-2014 – Indian President Mr Pranab Mukherjee today conferred the film awards for the year 2013 in various categories at the 61st National Film Awards Function held at the Vigyan Bhawan.

In his address, the President said, “I take this opportunity to reflect upon an important aspect of cinema. Besides being a strong medium of expression, cinema is a vehicle of influence and persuasion for the youth. When our children witness scenes depicting violence and bloodshed, it does affect their psyche. It is incumbent on our film makers to make a concerted effort to distinguish between what clearly is an art form and what is not.

“The cinematic content of films should have a desirable impact on the social behaviour of people, especially the new generation. Faced with erosion of values in today’s context, cinema should play a catalytic role in resetting our moral compass. Our film makers should deploy their creative efforts to present and propagate core values such as patriotism, respect for women, compassion and tolerance, and honesty and discipline. I am hopeful that everyone associated with the film industry will use their talent and artistic pursuits to create meaningful and socially relevant cinema.”

The President adds, “India’s media and entertainment industry is today at the cusp of a transformation. It is poised to leapfrog into a completely digital landscape. Indian cinema connects with millions of people – within the country and abroad, directly through theatres, close to two thousand multiplexes and through TV as well as the Internet. In 2013, the Indian Media and Entertainment (M&E) industry registered a growth of 11.8 per cent over 2012 and did a gross business of around Rs. 92,000 crore. The industry is expected to register a compound annual growth rate of 14.2 per cent to touch Rs. 1.8 lakh crore by 2018.”

Speaking on the occasion, Minister for Information & Broadcasting, Mr Manish Tewari, said that the national film awards were reflective of the heterogeneity of our film industry, an industry which was a confluence of many Indian languages, be it Hindi, Punjabi, Bengali, Malayalam, Tamil, Kannada, Assamese, Gujarati, Marathi, Bhojpuri, Telugu, Oriya etc. These awards were truly a tribute to the diversity of thought, and recognition of excellence. The Minister added that films in essence were the manifestation of the fundamental principle of freedom which emanates the idea of justice, liberty, equality and fraternity.

The highlight of the evening was the conferring of the 45th Dada Saheb Phalke Award to Mr Gulzar, the veteran film lyricist, director, screen writer, producer and poet.The award is given by the Government of India for outstanding contribution to the growth and development of Indian Cinema. The award consists of a Swarn Kamal (Golden Lotus), a cash prize of Rs.10 lakhs and a shawl. A total of 41 awards were given by the President in the Non-Feature film category while the number of awards in Feature Film category being 40. Three awards were given to Best Writing on Cinema.

At the 61st NFA, the award for the best feature film was conferred on Ship of Theseus (English-Hindi) produced by Recyclewala Films Pvt Ltd and directed by Anand Gandhi . In non-feature film category, the award for the Best Film was conferred to Rangbhoomi (Hindi) produced by Films Division and directed by Kamal Swaroop. In the category of Best Writing on Cinema section, the book Cinema Ga Cinema (Telugu) written by Nandagopal and published by Praga India, Hyderabad bagged the top honour, whereas Smt. Alaka Sahani (English) was conferred the award for the Best film Critic.

In the Feature Film category, a total of 40 films were selected for the 61st National Awards. Fandry (Marathi) won the Indira Gandhi award for the Best Debut Film of a Director. The award for the Best Popular Film for providing wholesome entertainment was given to Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (Hindi). The award for the Best Director was given to Shri Hansal Mehta for the film Shahid (Hindi). The award for the Best Actor was jointly shared between Raj Kumar for Shahid (Hindi) and & Suraj Venjaramoodu for the film Perariyathavar (Malayalam). The award for the Best Actress was conferred on Ms Geetanjali Thapa for her performance in Liar’s Dice (Hindi). The award for the best Supporting Actor was conferred on Shri Saurabh Shukla for the film Jolly LLB (Hindi). The award for the best supporting Actress has been shared by Ms Amruta Subhash for the film Astu (Marathi) & Aida El-Kashef for the film Ship of Theseus(English-Hindi). The Best Child Artist award has been shared by Master Somnath Avghade for Fandry (Marathi) and Ms. Sadhana for Thanga Meengal (Tamil).

The award for the Best Male playback singer has been conferred on Shri Rupankar for the song ‘E Tumi Kemon Tumi’ from the film Jaatishwar (Bengali). The award for the Best Female Playback singer has been conferred on Ms Bela Shende for the song ‘Khura Khura’ from the film ‘Tuhya Dharma Koncha (Marathi)’. The award for the best screenplay writer (original) has been conferred on Shri P. Sheshadri for the film December I (Kannada). The award for best screenplay writer (adapted) has been conferred on Shri Panchakshari for the film Prakruti (Kannada). The award for the best Dialogue has been conferred on Ms Sumitra Bhave for the film Astu (Marathi). The award for the best lyrics has been conferred on Na. Muthukumar for the lyric Ananda Yaazhai from the film Thanga Meengal (Tamil). A special jury award has been conferred on Viva In En and Shri Mahesh Limaye for the film Yellow (Marathi) and Future East Film Pvt Ltd and Ashim Ahluwalia for the film Miss Lovely (Hindi). The award for the best choreography has been conferred on Ganesh Acharya for Maston ka Jhund in the film Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (Hindi).

In the Non-Feature Film category, Shri Pranjal Duahas got the Best Director award for the film Chidiya Udh (No Dialogue). The Award for the Best Debut Film of a Director has been conferred to Shri Christo Tomy and Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute for the film Kanyaka (Malayalam). Girish Kasaravalli for Ananthamurthy – Not A Biography…But A Hypothesis (English) and Satyanshu Singh & Devanshu Singh for Tamaash (Kashmiri) have been selected for Special Jury Award. Foresting Life (Hindi, Assamese) has been awarded as the Best film in the Environmental category and Best Promotional film award was conferred on Chasing The Rainbow (English) and Kush (Hindi).