The Hindu, june 16, 20010

Dr. B Saroja Devi institutes award

Three actors honoured this year

BANGALORE: The Bangalore unit of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan has announced its first ever ‘Padmabhushan Dr. B. Saroja Devi National Award' to veteran south Indian film actors Harini S. Rao, Anjali Devi and Jamuna Ramana Rao.

Director (programmes and projects) of the bhavan, H.N. Suresh, told presspersons here on Thursday that the award is named after Ms. Saroja Devi as she has established an endowment with the bhavan. The annual award is for talented women, including technicians, musicians, dancers, script writers and others, in Indian cinema. The bhavan selected three persons for the award this year and only one will be selected for the annual award in future, he added.

 

Ms. Saroja Devi said though she wanted to honour veteran artistes such as the late B. Jayamma, B. Jaisri and Pandaribai for she had learnt the basics of her art from them, she could not realise her wish while they were alive. With the cinema industry not keen on supporting her cause, she decided to institute an award for women with Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan as the association would not only be respectful but also long lasting. Chairman of the bhavan (Bangalore) N. Ramanuja said the award would be presented on June 27 in Bangalore.

About the winners

Hailing from a freedom fighter's family from Mangalore Ms. Harini entered Tamil cinema as a child artiste and played the lead role in the Tamil film “Punyavathi”. She entered Kannada cinema in 1951 with the launch of “Jaganmohini”. She acted in many Kannada films, including the national award winning “Nandadeepa” and “Nandi”. Entering Telugu cinema industry in 1936 with the launch of “Raja Harishchandra”, Ms. Anjali Devi played the heroine in L.V. Prasad's “Kashtajeevi”. Known for the roles she played in “Lava Kusha”, “Suvarna Sundari” and “Anarkali”, she went on to produce many Telugu films. Having her roots in Karnataka (Hampi) Jamuna has acted in over 198 films in Kannada, Tamil, Telugu and Hindi, and is the founder of the Telugu Artistes Association. Her Kannada films include B.R. Pantulu's “Ratnagiri Rahasya”, R. Nagendra Rao's “Adarsha Sati” and Puttanna Kanagal's “Sakshatkara”.