Dilip Kumar receives Padma Vibhushan award

NEW DELHI: Legendary thespian Dilip Kumar, who gave a distinct meaning to method acting, was presented the country’s second highest civilian honour Padma Vibhushan in Mumbai today – just two days after his 93rd birthday.


The actor was presented a medal, a certificate and a shawl by Home Minister Rajnath Singh in the presence of the actor's wife Saira Banu. Maharashtra Governor C Vidyasagar Rao and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis among other dignitaries were present at the actor’s residence in Mumbai’s suburb Bandra.


Though both Dilip Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan were among those whose names had been announced in January this year, Kumar’s sickness prevented him from attending the presentation by President Pranab Mukherjee in April at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. 


Born as Muhammad Yousuf Khan in Peshawar on 11 December, 1922, Kumar made his debut as an actor in the film Jwar Bhata in 1944 produced by Bombay Talkies. 


In a career that spanned over six decades and just over sixty films, he showed his caliber in different genres and set trends for others to follow in films like the romantic Andaz (1949), the swashbuckling Aan (1952), the dramatic Devdas (1955), the comical Azaad (1955), the historical Mughal-e-Azam (1960) and the social Ganga Jamuna (1961). 


While he came to be known as the 'tragedy king of Bollywood' for films like Devdas, Daag(1952), Dil Diya Dard Liya (1966), Admi (1968) and Bairag (1976), he also did comedies likeRam Aur Shyam (which has been remade several times) and Madhumati. His acting prowess showed in films like Kranti (1981), Shakti (1982), Karma (1986), Saudagar (1991) and others. His last film was Qila (1998).


He was honoured with the Padma Bhushan award in 1991 and the country’s highest award in cinema Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1994 for his exceptional and distinguished contribution to the Indian cinema. The first to receive the Filmfare award in 1952 for Daag, he received this honour eight times though he had been nominated about 20 times. In 1993 he won the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award. Pakistan honoured him with its highest civilian honour Nishan-e-Imtiaz in 1997.


The late cine craftsman Satyajit Ray had described Dilip "the ultimate method actor.”


Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Rathore tweeted, “Congrats to the screen legend Dilip Kumar for being conferred Padma Vibhushan. His touching cinematic performances are inspiration for many.”


Fadnavis, in his tweet said, “Honoured to honour the veteran actor #DilipKumar ji with #PadmaVibhushan with Hon @BJPRajnathSingh ji & Hon Governor.”


The veteran actor decided to skip his birthday celebrations to mark ¬solidarity towards the Chennai floods victims. His wife and actor Saira Banu had said, “He has got so much love from all over the world. What more can I give him? I can only pray for his good health and that’s my gift for him.”


 “I think his health gets affected after any ¬celebration. We are also very affected by the Chennai incident and decided to keep it quiet. After what happened in Chennai, it would not have been right to have a huge celebration,” she added.

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