Bollywood star Akshay Kumar receiving the Best Actor Award from President Pranab Mukherjee at the 64th National Film Awards ceremony in New Delhi on May 3, 2017.
Bollywood star Akshay Kumar receiving the Best Actor Award from President Pranab Mukherjee at the 64th National Film Awards ceremony in New Delhi on May 3, 2017.
Arts & Entertainment

Mukherjee confers National Film Awards, K. Viswanath receives Phalke Award

NetIndian News Network

New Delhi, May 3, 2017

President Pranab Mukherjee today said the Government's initiative of creating a Film Promotion fund would promote and motivate talented independent filmmakers to promote their work across the globe in various international film festivals.
Speaking after presenting the 64th National Film Awards at a glittering function at Vigyan Bhavan here, Mr. Mukherjee pointed out that India has more than 200 languages, seven major religions and three major ethnic groups.
Yet, India's huge population lives under one system and one Constitution, and Indian cinema reflects this underlying unity of the diverse nation, he said.
"Like the diversity of life, there might be diversity in the Indian film industry but it conveys the common message of universal brotherhood, tolerance, cooperation and co-existence.  Cinema conveys the broad message of humanity and the best of Indian cinema has received the recognition of the nation today," he said.
Mr. Mukherjee said Indians could be argumentative but not intolerant as there was no place for an intolerant Indian in the country's civilizational ethos and culture. 
He said he was happy that Indian cinema had not forgotten to convey this message to the people.   He said that it was heartening to see so many young people being awarded on the occasion.  It was an assurance that the country can feel safe and secure that its national interests will be well protected in the future too.  
Minister for Information & Broadcasting M.Venkaiah Naidu and Minister of State for Information & Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Rathore were also present on the occasion. 
On the occasion,the President congratulated all the award winners, particularly renowned filmmaker and actor K Vishwanath, the Dadasaheb Phalke award winner this year for his outstanding contribution to the growth and development of Indian cinema.  A presenter of classical and traditional art, music and dance, Viswanath has been a guiding force in the Indian film industry.
Mr. Naidu said Indian cinema had remarkably showcased the vast richness of the country's cultural diversity, its beautiful landscapes and languages and had been a great unifying force in promoting national integration. He also called upon all the stakeholders to reflect on creative, constructive and meaningful engagement through the medium of cinema. Care and caution should be taken while depicting stories of tragedy, he said.
The Minister urged the film industry to join hands with the Government to facilitate mission MODI (Making of Developed India) in view of the strong influence of cinema on society and its values. He said the movies which had won awards focused on a variety of issues and themes ranging from discrimination, love, historical relationships and relevant social challenges. 
Mr. Naidu also congratulated the jury chairpersons and their teams who have brought out the best of Indian cinema under one roof. The Feature Film Central panel was headed by Priyadarshan, an eminent filmmaker. The Chairperson for Non-Feature Film Jury was Raju Mishra while the Chairperson for Writing Jury was Bhawana Somaaya. The Most Film Friendly State award jury was chaired by Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi, a popular director in Telugu film industry.
Some of the prominent winners in various categories for this year National Film Awards included Marathi movie Kasaav in Best Feature Film category and Fireflies in the Abyss in the Non-Feature Film Category. 
Bollywood star Akshay Kumar received the Best Actor award for his role in Rustom and Surabhi the Best Actress award for her role in Malayalam film Minnaminungu – the Firefly.
Kasaav, directed by Sumitra Bhave and Sunil Sukthankar and produced by them along with Mohan Agashe, was chosen for its perfect blending of an environmental behaviour and a personal one in a poignantly beautiful cinematic way. 
Akshay Kumar was chosen for his "perfect portrayal of a character caught in personal and social turmoil" while Surabhi got the award for her brilliance in portraying pain and ecstasy of a mother in a deplorable social condition.
Rajesh Mapuskar was given the Best Direction award for Marathi movie Ventilator.
Fireflies in the Abyss won the Best Film award in the Non-Feature Films category. Actress Sonam Kapoor got a Special Mention in the Feature Films category for her role in the movie Neerja.
The Best Film Critic award was given to G. Dhananjayan for his in-depth analysis on a wide range of topics such as film genres, brands, new strategies in movie watching, taxation impact and ticket pricing. 
Special Mention Award was given to the K.P. Jayashankar and Anjali Monteiro for the book ‘A fly in the Curry’. Best Book on Cinema award was given to ‘Lata- Sur Gatha’ authored by Yatindra Mishra.
Special Jury Award in the Feature category was given to Malayalam superstar Mohan Lal for his mastery in dealing with characters of various shades with unparallel acting brilliance. Special Jury Award in the Non-Feature category was given to ‘The Cinema Travellers’. 
This year, a new category ‘Best on-location Sound Recordist’ in the Non-Feature Film section was also introduced.
Uttar Pradesh was awarded the Most Film Friendly State award for implementing a unique film policy. The State’s Film Policy included various measures to create a suitable environment, which not only invited shooting of films on a large scale in the State but also promoted other activities related to various aspects of film production including financial incentives for filmmakers.
Jharkhand was given Special Mention Award for its Film Policy which provided growth opportunities to the local filmmaking talent from within the State.
Movies in the languages other than those specified in the VIII Schedule of the constitution in the feature Film categories were also awarded. The award for the best Moran Film was given to Haanduk while best Tulu film was given to Madipu.