The 65th National Film Awards, which took place on May 03, turned a big debate after more than 60 awardees remained absent from the special occasion.
The awardees were furious after it was disclosed that Indian President Ram Nath Kovind will give away 11 honors only.
The remaining honors were being presented by I&B Minister Smriti Irani and Minister of State Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore.
The annoyed receivers had stated that their “emotions got cheated” and “feelings hurt”.
Film director Indrani Chakraborty, whose Ladakh Chale Rickshawala bagged the Best Exploration/Adventure movie, said, “Getting the National Award from the President of India is a huge honor. Any recipient treasures that one photo with the President for life. We have given a signed petition to the directorate of film festivals stating that we will be absent from the ceremony if the awards aren't given by the President.”
As the awardees remained absent from the special occasion, two rows remained empty and afterward, they get filled up using mannequins.
The show coordinators took away the nameplates and the individuals who were sitting in the back row were asked to come forward to fill up the front seats.
A noteworthy personality who won the prize stated, "The empty seats were later filled with dummies.”
President's secretariat also forwarded a clarification and stated that it was notified to the information and broadcasting ministry long before that the president would be present at the prestigious award show for just a period of 1 hour.
As per Kovind’s secretariat, "The President attends all award functions and convocations for a maximum of one hour. This has been the protocol since he took office. It was conveyed to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry several weeks ago and the ministry knew this all along. Rashtrapati Bhavan is surprised by the 11th-hour questions that have been raised.”
Kovind has given 11 awards on May 03 at Vigyan Bhawan in the national capital.
The list of 11 National Honors Winners Comprise -