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Katrina Kaif accepted Smita Patil Memorial award from Union Minister Nitin Gadkari in Mumbai despite wide criticism over her selection in social media and the press.
In her acceptance speech, Katrina called the late Smita Patil an inspiration and expressed her thanks to Priyadarshni academy for honouring her with the award. “The world of cinema not just Indian cinema is often called a man’s world. It is changing but the change is slow. So I believe it is a matter of great pride that we have an award that acknowledges and recognises the contributions of women in cinema. This award honours the memory of one of the greatest and most accomplished actresses of India, Smita Patil whose roles were an inspiration and touched the lives of millions of women,” she said in her accepted speech.
Talking about the award, Katrina said, “As an actor the love of the people is the biggest reward. But when one gets recognition from the industry in the form of an award, the feeling is very overwhelming. I promise to be as sincere to the craft which has largely given me the purpose of my life in the last few years. I will continue to make my audience who has given me so much love and support proud and get their support.”
Speaking about the late Smita Patil, Katrina said, “It is said that woman hold up half the sky but a woman like Smitaji showed us not even the sky is the limit. would like to accept this award on behalf of every woman who excel in their fields.”
There is lot of criticism for awarding the honour to Baar Baar Dheko actress.
Hindustan Times said: “You may ask what she has contributed in her 30-film-old career to deserve the honour, other than being Chameli and Sheila? And why, of all the other, infinitely more deserving actors (Kalki Koechlin, Radhika Apte, Konkana Sen Sharma, to name a few), she has been handpicked by the Priyadarshni Academy.
“Kaif’s selection is not just a grave insult to Patil, who captured the imagination of an entire generation with her poignant portrayal of the socio-political issues of her time, it also mocks all the previous recipients — brilliant actors notable for their powerful performances and choice of films — Vidya Balan, Tabu, Madhuri Dixit and Sridevi among others.
“We are not new to undeserving people being felicitated for reasons best known to organisers. However, what makes this one instance stand out is the vast dissimilarity between the two actors it links, where any association, however remote, is impossible. Patil was all that Kaif can never be”.
“The work and legacy of Smita Patil is the stuff that films are made on. She was the first on-screen working woman of the Indian cinema – she played a movie star in Arth, a prostitute in Mandi, a spice-maker in Mirch Masala, a milk-woman in Manthan – making her way in a man’s world, fighting for what’s denied to her, and making you root for her all through the way. – CINEWS