Film Khosla Ka Ghosla director Dibakar Banerjee’s decision to return the National Award conferred to the 2006 hit flick starring Anupam Kher and Ranvir Shorey, to protest “growing intolerance in the country”, has now snowballed into an entirely different row. According to media reports, Savita Raj Hiremath, the film’s producer, has said that Dibakar has “no right to give back the award as it was given to the film, and therefore the producer”.
The National Award was not conferred on director Dibakar Banerjee for his sole contribution in the 2006 film Khosla Ka Ghosla. The film won the award for Best Film In Hindi and thus the award went to the team, not to the director alone.
According to a report published in The Times Of India, Hiremath said, “People work for this honour all their lives, we were lucky to receive it for our first film. Why would I give up something so dear for a cause which seems politically motivated? I don’t see anything having gone drastically wrong with the country in the last year-and-a-half. If anything, the protests by a particular group are only maligning India’s image.”
Referring to Dibakar, she also said, “When I confronted him, he apologised.” Banerjee also confirmed the news, “Protests always bring pain, but that’s not going to make me step back from a core issue.”
Interestingly, Dibakar returned the award for Khosla Ka Ghosla and not for Oye Lucky, Lucky Oye for which he received another National Award. Banerjee says, “I did not think -`why Khosla, why not Lucky’ -when I raised the issue.”
He added: “I am not on any social media. I have no political clout. I protested with the only weapon I have since the national award is linked to my reputation as a filmmaker.If I had tweeted or posted on Facebook, it would have reached some places. But by coming together with 11 other filmmakers returning their national awards, I drew the attention of the entire country. My conscience is clear.”