Rajinikanth Receives Dadasaheb Phalke Award

New Delhi: Superstar Rajinikanth received the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, India’s highest film honour, from Vice President Venkaiah Naidu at New Delhi’s Vigyan Bhavan on Monday. Rajinikanth, who used to work as a bus conductor before entering the film industry, dedicated the award to his old bus driver friend.

He remembered his friend Raj Bahadur saying: “He was the first person to identify acting talents in me when I was a bus conductor. He encouraged me to enter the world of cinema.”

He also dedicated the Phalke Award to late filmmaker K Balachander, who directed Rajinikanth’s first film Apoorva Raagangal, his brother Sathyanarayana Rao and his “directors, producers, theatre owners, technicians and fans.”

Rajinikanth Receives Dadasaheb Phalke Award
Rajinikanth Receives Dadasaheb Phalke Award

Rajinikanth attended the ceremony with his son-in-law Dhanush, who won the National Film Award for Best Actor for his performance in Asuran. Rajinikanth’s wife Latha and their daughter Aishwarya, who is married to Dhanush, were also there.

A jury made up of singers Asha Bhosle and Shankar Mahadevan, actors Mohanlal and Biswajeet Chatterjee and filmmaker Subhash Ghai had selected Rajinikanth for the honour earlier this year.

At the National Film Awards on Monday, actor Biswajit Chatterjee said they selected Rajinikanth for the honour because he is a “talented” person and very “down to earth.” On Sunday, Rajinikanth shared a statement on Twitter about receiving the award and called it one of the “two special landmarks” – the other one being his daughter Soundarya Vishagan’s new app named Hoote, which was launched in the evening.

He thanked his fans saying that he is ‘nobody without them.’ “They are the gods who keep me living,” Rajinikanth said..

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