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Politics behind Padma Awards 2020

Padma Awards perpetuates the myth that the Indian Padma Award winners are Bollywood dram e baaz associated with the BJP

Sunday January 26, 2020 11:30 AM, Pradip Bhattacharya

How to get Padma Awards

The BJP must be happy with the announcement of the Padma Awards lists? Interestingly, the 2020 awards saw the presence of many Bollywood personalities who are associated with the Modi club. Bollywood artistes like Kangana Ranaut, Ekta Kapoor, Karan Johar, and Adnan Sami had walked out with the cake so easily. Eventually, these actors are titled as "Modi Ke Sitare".

Interestingly, these "Modi Ke Sitare" filmstars very often raise their voice against Shabana Azmi, Aparna Sen, Naseeruddin Shah, Javed Akhtar, Mani Rathnam who are labeled by BJP and RSS as the staunch supporters of the ‘Tukde Tukde Gang’. Deepika Padukone's visit to JNU was also projected as a support to 'Tukde Tukde Gang’. A specific reason why Deepika lost Padma Award to Kangana could be that the latter questioned the former's visit to JNU. This looks like we are all political animals. Kangana is no match to Aparna Sen or Shabana Azmi - a fact very clear from Kangana’s talent or career graph.

The fields of expertise of the winners may be anything; it is the nature of the relationship with BJP and RSS that gets underlined. That cinema field alone excites us, sufficiently enough to stretch the outer limits of statistical probabilities to come up with a presumed political analysis of the awards. Above all, we are all political animals too. Are we not?

Remember, Kangana being always vocal in support of the BJP. She can go to the extent of throwing jibe against none other than Congress President Sonia Gandhi when she has reached a milestone neither in her film career nor has gained any political career. Kangana is no Nargis Dutt or Meena Kumari in Bollywood. Not even Sridevi. Kangana’s presence in cinema is minimized to a level of new generation actors. That is all we can say. But there is a political backing to her Padma recognition? The actress Kangana had sharply unveiled attack on Sonia Gandhi on the eve of Lok Sabha election 2019, urging voters to free India from the ‘rule of an Italian government’. Nowadays, the BJP allows everyone to raise voice against Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi by the people who are neither political nor have affiliation to any political party. That is the audacity of the BJP and RSS. Thanks to their "Hndutva tag" and claimed RSS ideology?

Would the actress Kangana after receiving Padma award ever free herself from the BJP or become apolitical she has to answer? There are many talented actors in India than Kangana but since the Queen actress has the backing of RSS and BJP, she receives the Padma Awards.

Next comes TV tycoon Ekta Kapoor, whom we know had introduced Union Minister Smiriti Irani in the Television world. We all know how Smriti and Ekta are always friendly, posting or congratulating each other on Twitter and other social media platforms. Above all, Ekta was instrumental in pushing Smriti’s career from the Television world to Politics. It was L K Advani who spotted Smriti in successful TV series "Kyon Ki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi" and launched Smriti along with Ramayana TV serial Arun Govil. Although Smriti initially flopped in her political launchpad of the BJP, Ekta’s continuous support gave the minister Irani most satisfaction. Although Smriti flopped also as an actress but Modi-Shah’s backing made Smriti a minister in 2014 even when her false degree raised eyebrows of all Indians. Smriti could not perform well as a minister, and her attacks on Sonia, Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi, most of the time personal, made more headlines for her than her ministerial career.

Let us now talk about Karan Johar. Karan Johar became successful for his father Yash Johar who made films with Amitabh Bachchan. Johar’s close association with former Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis and Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not easily forgotten. Was then the association of Karan Johar with Modi helped him to fetch Padma Award? Above all, Kangana, Karan or Ekta are reportedly good in funding the BJP?

Singer Adnan Sami was also the target of internet trolling just like Kangana Ranaut after he publicly declared his support for India’s BJP party. He was seen in his Twitter handle posting his wishes to the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi during Lok Sabha election, especially in UP region. He also urged the necessity for the defeat of SP-BSP gathabandhan and sent best wishes to late Arun Jaitley or present Home minister Amit Shah. Hence, one feels that Adnan Sami’s support to BJP fetched him the Padma Award along with Kangana, Karan Johar, and others.

It is a bit pity indeed such an exercise of the vote for Padma Awards undertaken by BJP government, ‘’by yours truly BJP tag’’ that throws for a better political world in the dictionary - ‘’coincidences with BJP’’ can fetch filmstars or cricketers very easily national awards. Last year Gautam Gambhir won Padma Award and the cricketer was soon fielded in the Lok Sabha election from New Delhi.

We are a bit confused with the tag given by BJP "Tukde Tukde Gang" or labeling Indians as Pakistanis. We do feel ashamed as Indians when every politician from BJP or RSS openly shouts against those protesting CAA or NRC as "Paksitani" and "anti-National". But, we have not heard any strong word from the BJP in changing their attitude or mindset and put their head down in shame. Hence, Kudos to Padma Awardees like Kangana who termed Indians protesting against the CAA as supporters of Tukde Tukde Gang. The BJP also sees the 40-day-long Shaheen Bagh protest, which has been emerging as a symbol of the anti-CAA agitation, as anti-India. Hence, we can claim that BJP knows a lot of drama baazi.

Padma Awards perpetuates the myth that the Indian Padma Award winners are Bollywood dram e baaz associated with the BJP. At a time when this is the kind of language and dram e baazi like calling 'Tukde Tukde Gang’ the Indians that carry the day in politics, what else can you expect from our Padma Awardees then coming in support of the BJP?

[Views expressed are the writer's own.]

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