'Don't Give Us National Award': In FB Post, Resul Pookutty Calls Out President's 'Classist' Behaviour
In a scathing Facebook post, Resul Pookutty pointed out that the President's office picked only stars for 'those 11 awards'.
Image: A file photo of Resul Pookutty
Pookutty, who has won a National Award in the past, earlier tweeted, "If the government of India cannot earmark three hours of its time, they should not bother giving us National Awards. More than 50 per cent of our sweat, you take it as entertainment tax, the least you could do is respect the values we hold dear."
If the Govt.Of India cannot earmark three houres if it’s time, they should not bother us giving us #NationalAward. More than 50%of our sweat you take it as entertainment tax,the least you could do is respect the values we hold dear!— resul pookutty (@resulp) May 3, 2018
Later, in a long Facebook post, the "ordinary technician" working in the Indian Film Industry pointed out that the smallest people in the whole spectrum got sidelined while the President's office picked "only stars" for "those 11 awards".
"We felt bad because when Your good office chose from the bottom of the list it was only the stars and star elements got picked up! Or those 11 people could have been the young and first time awardees! We would have clapped in joy at Your choice... We felt bad because the people who got left out were those raw people, the technicians who are always called first in every award ceremony and edited out in every TV shows. Stars don’t care us, business don’t care us, we thought our nation would care us!" Pookutty wrote.
He further stated that since the President wasn't free, he along with other winners would have waited for another day to receive the prestigious award and even managed their own accommodations since they were "used to traveling in trains and buses" and would've put up in lodges to avoid the "extra burden".
"We would have come back with our own expenditure, in trains or buses,would have stayed in the cheapest lodges to avoid extra burden of repeat call for @MIB,after all we are used to traveling in trains and buses when our stars travel by first class flights, to save production’s money. We wouldn’t have felt bad."
National Award winner Varun Grover was amongst those who shared Pookutty's post on Twitter.
Academy Award winner Resul Pookutty on the disturbingly classist way President of India and Smriti Irani ji treated the film technicians yesterday at the National Film Awards. pic.twitter.com/GjIuPHysxt— वरुण (@varungrover) May 4, 2018
Here's the full text from Pookutty's Facebook post:
This is the sentiments of an ordinary technician working in the Indian Film Industry.The Hon.President mentioned in His speech at the National Award Ceremony that “it is indeed a special moment for each of the 125 Award winners”! I do not know if it was special for all of them but I’m sure it was special for some of them! Hon.President also mentioned that there are 200,000/ people directly and many more indirectly working in the film industry. Yes that is true... most of the people who abstained from the ceremony yesterday consists of the majority of that 200,000 .
They are the work force... they work behind the camera, they carry heavy lights, they carry heavy equipments, they swing booms, they push trolleys, they work more than 18houres a day!. It is their sweat that earns every state Govt it’s Entertainment Tax- UP charges the highest 60% in addition to the GST @18%, though we are strictly not a service Industry. So in effect we became the highest taxed Industry!
When your good office had given time to hand over the National Award to only 11 members out of the 125, it is those smallest people in the whole spectrum got sidelined! Their aspirations and ambition got crushed! Hon.President mentioned in the speech India based Films been successful so foreign studios are coming in, we must encourage every opportunity to celebrate our values. But the real people who took India’s name in the International map of world cinema are those technical force.
Starting with V.Santharam who got recognized for Best Sound at Cannes in the early 50’s, or Bhanu Athaiya who brought the first competitive Oscar to India or Santhosh Sivan who got recognized by the American Society Of Cinematographers or Resul Pookutty who got Asia’s first technical Oscar for Sound and many more such exemplary examples exist in our filmic conscience.
When your good office chose the last 11 from the list of 125, it is these extra ordinary small people who got left out in their national recognition. We learned from the news that the President’s office was too busy and couldn’t have allowed more than one hour. We could have been called back on another day! We would have come back with our own expenditure, in trains or buses,would have stayed in the cheapest lodges to avoid extra burden of repeat call for @MIB,after all we are used to traveling in trains and buses when our stars travel by first class flights, to save production’s money. We wouldn’t have felt bad. We felt bad because when Your good office chose from the bottom of the list it was only the stars and star elements got picked up!
Or those 11 people could have been the young and first time awardees! We would have clapped in joy at Your choice... We felt bad because the people who got left out were those raw people, the technicians who are always called first in every award ceremony and edited out in every TV shows. Stars don’t care us, business don’t care us, we thought our nation would care us!The National Award is our nation’s highest recognition, being recognized at Hon. President’s hand is our privilege, our honour and our dream!.But I felt the Nation’s sentiment got left out in the choices that were made yesterday, for its the technicians who always gets the raw deal!.
I plead your forgiveness,for if I have mentioned anything out of line,after all I’m one of those sentimental ordinary Indian Film Technician!.
You can also read the entire post on Pookutty's Facebook page here:
(With inputs from IANS)
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