New Delhi, April 1 (IANS) Superstar Rajinikanth will be honoured with the 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award, Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar announced on Thursday.
After Javadekar made the announcement on Twitter, Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Rajinikanth with a tweet, “Congratulations Talaivar”. Soon Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu too, tweeted.
“Hearty congratulations to Shri @rajinikanth on being conferred the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Award. Over the past many years, the versatile actor has been enthralling people by portraying a vast array of roles depicting myriad hues of human experience and emotions.#Rajinikanth,” said Naidu and added: “My best wishes for the renowned thespian’s future endeavours! #Rajinikanth.”
“Popular across generations, a body of work few can boast of, diverse roles and an endearing personality…that’s Shri @rajinikanth Ji for you. It is a matter of immense joy that Thalaiva has been conferred with the Dadasaheb Phalke Award. Congratulations to him,” Modi said.
Rajini is called Talaivar or “Style Mannan” in the Tamil movie industry.
Calling Rajinikanth “one of the greatest actors in the history of Indian cinema”, the I&B minister said that the actor was being awarded for his contribution in the field of acting, production and screenwriting for Indian cinema.
Posting a picture of the actor, Javadekar wrote: “Happy to announce #Dadasaheb Phalke award for 2020 to one of the greatest actors in history of Indian cinema Rajnikant ji His contribution as actor, producer and screenwriter has been iconic I thank Jury @ashabhosle @SubhashGhai1 @Mohanlal @Shankar_Live #BiswajeetChatterjee.”
Widely regarded as one of the most popular cinematic icons in India, Rajinikanth has also been honoured with the Padma Bhushan in 2000 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2016 by the Government of India.
Rajinikanth, who enjoys a demigod status, made his debut in Tamil cinema with “Apoorva Raagangal”. Among his numerous hits are films like “Baashha”, “Sivaji” and “Enthiran”. He is known as Thalaivar or leader by his fans.
The Dadasaheb Phalke Award is India’s highest honour in cinema. It is presented annually at the National Film Awards by Directorate of Film Festivals of the Information and Broadcasting ministry of the Government of India. The first recipient of the award was actress Devika Rani. Recent recipients include Amitabh Bachchan, Vinod Khanna, filmmaker K.Vishwanath and Manoj Kumar.
The Dada Saheb Phalke award jury consists of Malayalam super star Mohanlal and Tamil music composer and singer, Shankar Mahadevan, besides veteran singer Asha Bhosle, and moviemaker Subhash Ghai.
Actor-turned-politician, Kamal Haasan also congratulated Rajinikanth.
Tamil Nadu villages and cities bursted with joy on the announcement of Rajini’s feat. People took to streets and hundreds reached Poes Garden residence.
At Salem people celebrated Rajini’s Phalke win by distributing sweets and lighting crackers.
Manonmani G., a homemaker from Salem told IANS: “Rajini deserves the award. He is the greatest actor of Indian cinema and this award becomes great after Rajini has won it. I still remember each and every dialogue of his epoch movies “Basha”, “Padayappa” and others.
The Information and Broadcasting minister when asked whether this award was given to Rajinikanth to influence Tamil Nadu elections, Javadekar said: “This is in no way related to Tamil Nadu elections”.
Congratulatory messages are pouring in from political leaders, actors, directors and social workers, besides people from all walks of life.