Rajinikanth receives Dadasaheb Phalke Award; Dedicated respect to Balachander of his Guru

Rajinikanth receives Dadasaheb Phalke Award. (Photo Credits: News9)

Rajinikanth receives Dadasaheb Phalke Award. (Photo Credits: News9)

Superstar Rajinikanth, who received the coveted Dadasaheb Phalke Award at the National Film Awards ceremony on Monday, dedicated the honor to his mentor and late film director K Balachander.

The actor, popularly known as ‘Thalaivar’ (leader in Tamil), was awarded the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, the highest honor in Indian cinema for an artist.

In his acceptance speech, Rajinikanth thanked his elder brother Satyanarayana Rao, transport associate Raj Bahadur, his fans, filmmakers, collaborators and the Tamil people for their unwavering support over five decades.

“I am extremely happy to receive this award and thank the government for this most prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Award. I dedicate this award to my mentor, my guru K Balachander Sir, I thank my brother Satyanarayan Rao, he is like a father figure in my life, for giving me great value,” the 70-year-old star said. National Film Award Ceremony at Kaha Vigyan Bhawan.

“My friend, driver and transport colleague Raj Bahadur. He noticed the acting talent in me and encouraged me to get into cinema. All my producers and directors who have produced my films, technicians, artists, distributors, media, press and all my fans and Tamil people.

Vice President Venkaiah Naidu called Rajinikanth “one of the great sons of this great country”.

Describing Rajinikanth as a “great actor of South India, not of South India”, the Vice President said in his address that the veteran actor has given memorable performances in several films including ‘Bhairavi’ and ‘Shivaji’.

Naidu said, “The iconic actor’s incomparable acting skills have given a new dimension to the Indian film industry. He has shown how to strike a perfect balance between artistic expression and mass appeal.”

Watch excerpts from the award ceremony:

From ‘Apoorva Raagangal’ to ‘Annathe’ in 1975 with Balachander, Rajinikanth continues to entertain audiences with his swag, style and unparalleled on-screen presence.

Last December, Rajinikanth shelved plans to enter electoral politics. Taking a U-turn, the superstar had announced that he would not enter politics due to his ill health.

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