Encourage Senior Tiatrists
The other day I watched the Hindi movie ‘102 Not Out’ starring Amitabh Bachchan and Rishi Kapoor, both in their seventies. The very next day, I happened to watch the Konkani tiatr ‘Tukai Tench Asa’ directed by Sharon Mazarello. The tiatr has several senior tiatrists acting in it, many of them in their seventies and even in their eighties. The cast included senior tiatrists like C D Silva, Sabina, Platilda, Wilson Mazarello among others. There were songs sung by Marcelino De Betim and Hortencio. It was indeed heart-warming to see many of these senior Konkani actors back on stage probably after a long gap as they doled out fine performances. It was a nostalgic experience. Just like the Bollywood stars of yesteryears are making a comeback on the big screen, senior tiatrists too need to be encouraged to get back to the Konkani stage to act alongside the tiatrists of today.
ADELMO FERNANDES, Vasco
Keep President’s Office Out Of Controversy
A National award brings abundant joy, satisfaction and recognition to the recipient. If the honours are done by the first citizen of India, the President, then the excitement is manifold. But the 65th National Film Award ceremony ended on a sore note, as nearly 60 of the approximate 140 awardees boycotted the solemn occasion. They were annoyed that they were informed about the fact that President Ram Nath Kovind would hand over awards to only 11 recipients, and ministers Smriti Irani and Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore would do the rest. Those who boycotted the event were unhappy that they were kept in the dark till the eleventh hour, about the changed protocol. Moreover, everywhere, including the invitation, it was explicitly mentioned that the President would do the honours. They felt let down, as their dream of receiving the award at the hands of the President lay shattered. The Information and Broadcasting (I&B) Ministry has a lot to explain about the concealment of news from the awardees till the last moment. Was it a fear about the possibility of a ‘mass exodus’ that kept the ministry on the back foot? Or was it a plain case of bureaucratic bungle and apathy? After President Kovind took over, the President’s office is understood to have written to all ministries that he will be unable to spare more than half an hour to one hour for such functions. Accordingly, it was decided, by the end of March, that the President would give away only eleven important awards including the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke award. A plan could have been chalked out to cut short the duration of the function to spare the President from standing for long. Not only has the I&B Ministry injected a non-existent ‘hierarchical status’ among the awardees, but it has undermined the office of the President.
GANAPATHI BHAT, Akola