President confers 55th National Film Awards


Zakir Hussein,,

New Delhi. The President Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil today confered the 55th National Film Awards for 2007 to the illustrious winners. The eminent music personality Sh. Manna Dey received the Dada Saheb Phalke Award for the year 2007 in the ceremony held at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi today. Ninety one awardees in various categories received their Swarn and Rajat Kamals along with the cash rewards at the hands of the President.

Addressing the gathering the President Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil said that Cinema should not only be a source of popular entertainment for families and individuals, but also a vehicle for social change. Cinema has a deep impact on people as they watch how social evils like child marriage, dowry and drug addiction can destroy a life or how a good deed can bring out the gentler side of a human being or how we can help the disadvantaged and differently-abled to live a life of dignity, the President added. Smt Patil urged the film fraternity to understand this responsibility in its fullest sense. Making a special mention of the award winning child artiste Sharad Goyekar for his role in Marathi feature film Tingya, the President hoped that award bestowed on Master Sharad Goyekar will further inspire and motivate him to give greater expression to his talent as also inspire young Sharad and his family to work for good causes with conviction just like the character he has portrayed in the film. The President emphasized that it is important that the entertainment sector includes value-based ideals and points of view, which can motivate viewers to aspire for higher and nobler goals in their lives.

Speaking on the occasion of the 55th National Film Awards function, the Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting Smt. Ambika Soni said that the presence of Rashtrapatiji on this occasion is a continued reminder of the importance that the Government accords to the medium of cinema in our country. The Minister added that for a vast and culturally diverse country like ours, it is essential that the cinematic ethos develops into a vibrant medium that cuts across language barriers so as to evolve its own common language. The National Film Awards 2007, in this respect have not only brought many a hidden talent to light but also helped in encouraging films that otherwise may perhaps not have achieved national recognition. Our film industry is truly Pan-Indian and the 2007 National Film Awards truly reflect that spirit, Smt Soni added. The Minister announced that shortly a panel of eminent persons would be constituted, who would consider the entire scenario and propose steps to make the National Film Awards more focussed and suggest measures which would reflect the newer developments happening in the field of cinema. There is a need to re-invent the National Film Awards to make it more contemporary, she acknowledged.

Awardees who were personally present to receive the award today included Sh. Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Best Direction award for Malayalam film Naalu Pennungal; Sh. Priyadarshan, Director of Kanchivaram, Tamil film which won the Best Direction award Award; Sh. Prakash Raj who won the Best Direction award for Kanchivaram; Ms. Umashree who won the Best Direction award for her role in Kannada Film Gulabi Talkies; Sh.Girish Kasaravalli, Director of Gulabi Talkies; Sh. Shimit Amin, Director Chak De India film which won the award for the Best Direction award providing Wholesome Entertainment; Sh.Darshan Jariwala who won the award for Best Direction award in Film Gandhi My Father; Ms. Shefali Shah, awardee for the Best Direction award for her role in The Last Lear; Master Sharad Goyekar who was adjudged the Best Direction award for his role in Marathi Feature Film Tingya; Sh. Shankar Mahadevan, the Best Direction award Singer of Taare Zameen Par; Ms. Shreya Ghoshal, the Best Direction award Singer of Jab We Met; Feroz Abbas Khan, Best Direction award Winner for Gandhi My Father, Sh. Sabu Cyril winner of Best Direction award for Om Shanti Om, Sh. Prasoon Joshi winner of Best Direction award for Taare Zameen Par, Ms Sonam Kapoor (on behalf of Anil Kapoor) for Special Jury Award to Gandhi My Father and Sh. Amrit Sagar Director, winner of Best Direction award in Hindi 1971; Director Rituparno Ghosh for his Best Direction award in English The Last Lear, Director Jabbar Patel for Best Direction award Antardhwani, Sh. Zubin Garg for the Best Direction award in Echoes of Silence; Sh Santosh Sivan for Best Direction award Prarambha; Sh Jayaraj for Best Direction award Malayalam film Vellapokathil and Sh Supriyo Sen for the Best Direction award film Hope Dies Last in War.

Three Awards were given in the Best Direction award the Cinema Category, 34 in the Non-Feature Film Section and 54 in the Feature Film Section. The National Film Awards aim at encouraging the production of films of aesthetic and technical excellence and social relevance contributing to the understanding and appreciation of cultures of different regions of the country in cinematic form, thereby also promoting integration and unity of the nation. National Award for Best Direction award cinema and Best Direction award also aim at encouraging study and appreciation of cinema as an art form and dissemination of information and critical appreciation of this art-form through publication of books, articles, reviews etc.


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