Millennium Post

Mamata honours the best of Tollywood

Mamata honours the best of Tollywood
Ina star studded show that featured the best of Tollywood and a healthy sprinkling of Bollywood, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee conferred lifetime achievement awards in memory of the legendary Uttam Kumar to actors Soumitra Chatterjee, Supriya Devi and Sabitri Chatterjee,  contemporaries of the matinee idol. Bollywood veteran Mithun Chakraborty was conferred the ‘mahanayak’ award in a glittering ceremony at the Science City auditorium on Tuesday.

While Dadasaheb Phalke winner Chatterjee---a favourite of Satyajit Ray--- thanked Mamata for instituting an award ceremony in the field of cinema, he also expressed his wish to have seen acclaimed director Mrinal Sen on the dais.’Let Mamata give us awards every year. I thank her wholeheartedly’, he said to thundering applause by the audience.

Mithunda, while thanking the state government for the gesture, regaled audiences with one of his most popular dialogues in the Bengali film, MLA Fatakeshto, ‘Maarbo ekhane lash porbe shoshane’.

Mamata also announced special film awards for some of Uttam Kumar’s contemporaries, including Madhabi Mukherjee, Anjana Bhowmick, Dipti Roy, Sabita Basu, Lily Chakraborty, Mousumi Chatterjee and Lalita Chatterjee. Among the younger actors who were honoured are Debasree Roy, Satabdi Roy,---TMC MLA and MP respectively. Actors Biswajit, Haradhan Bandopadhyay, Ranjit Mullick, Prosenjit Chatterjee and Tapas Pal also won awards.

The Chief Minister had announced the setting up of the award while paying homage to Uttam Kumar on his death anniversary last year. ‘Nobody ever did anything for Uttam Kumar when he was alive,’ the Chief Minister said. ‘Forty-three people have been short-listed because these awards were not given earlier. From next year, there will be fewer nominees’, she announced.

Film director Goutam Ghose, cinematographer Soumendu Ray, writers Shaktipada Rajguru and Prafulla Ray and music directors like Ravindra Jain, Bappi lahiri, Debojyoti Mishra were also feted. Jain regaled audiences with a Bengali composition on the most popular ‘nayak’ of Bengali films, Uttam Kumar.

Interestingly, the Chief Minister also announced monthly pension worth Rs 5000 to three ailing actors who had no one to care for them. She said that in future hapless or ailing workers of the film industry could approach her for financial support.
Nandini Guha

Nandini Guha

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