ri Raghavendra Chitravani awards were given away at a function in Bengaluru on Saturday night on the occasion of its 40th anniversary and also to mark film publicist late D V Sudheendra’s 65th birth anniversary who founded the organization. The event was also Chitravani’s 15th year award presentation ceremony.

Speaking on the occasion, music composer Hamsalekha urged the organizers to invite sponsors and conduct the event in Filmfare style from next year. He said all artistes should come forward and support the idea so that these awards become Kannada’s Filmfare awards function. He described Sudheendra as a ‘Suddhiya Indira’ and recalled how he entered filmdom. Hamsalekha has also agreed to give away an award in his name from next year along with other Raghavendra Chitravani awards.

Earlier, Jaggesh who had to rush for a function at home recalled the time when DVS and lensman K N Nagesh Kumar took him to journalist Chiranjeevi to get a piece published that got him some recognition. He said he was happy to see his name appear in the credits list of films in the newspapers thanks to DVS. He urged the new generation in the Kannada film industry to grow and take Kannada films worldwide by making good quality films.

Film publicist Venkatesh who got rechristened as Sudheendra Venkatesh on the suggestion of lensman Nagesh Kumar said he could not conduct the awards ceremony in 2016 as he had to undergo a surgery. He said he wanted to organize a simple function but he said he changed his mind after he heard Jyothi Raviprakash and her team’s musical tribute programme held last month. He thanked all the photographers – K M Veeresh, K N Nagesh Kumar, D C Nagesh, R Manohar, K S Mokshendra for helping him put up the photo exhibition of his uncle DVS. He also thanked the producers and especially the journalists with whom he said he spent more time than with his family. He also thanked Hamsalekha for adding another award from next year in the composer’s name.

Senior journalist Doddahulluru Rukkoji who won the national award for writing a book on Dr Rajkumar read out two letters that DVS had written to him in 1987 and 1993 when times were tough for the cinema magazines and the concerns shown by DVS in them. He also thanked lensman Nagesh Kumar for giving him photographers but regretted that he couldn’t pay him for the photos as they did not have resources.    

Film director Naganna said he has met former minister Revanna and urged the film chamber to give a letter to the letter demanding an award for film publicists. He said it was unheard and unprecedented on the part of film publicists to honour film producers who gave them work and money. He said film publicists paying back the producers is a big thing in the industry. He said it was an honour to accept the award instituted in the name of Vishnuvardhan’s family as it was Vishnuvardhan who made him a director, he said.

Charan Raj who flew from Chennai to be a special guest for the function said he couldn’t have said no to this as he recalled the time when DVS fed him Bisi Bele Bath and Badam milk at his home and gave him important breaks in his career as an actor. He also thanked the press and photographer Nagesh Kumar for supporting him in his initial days that made him a big star to go and act in films made in nine languages. He said it was DVS and others who forced him to accept the villain’s role in Telugu film Pratighatana and there was no looking back from then.

Latha Hamsalekha sang the hit number Hasiru Gaajina Balegale that she had sung more than three decades back and regaled the audiences.    

Siddagangaiah Kambalu who accepted the award for best dialogue from the film Rama Rama Re said all the credit for the award should go to the film’s artistes. He said the film has completed 100 days of run and appreciated the film’s director Satyaprakash.

R T Rama said she was so happy to see her photo appear on the cover page of Prajamatha because of DVS’s efforts. She said she cherishes that moment even to this day. She said she is a backbencher and thanked Sri Raghavendra Chitravani for bestowing her with this rare honour.

Dingri Nagaraj said it was DVS and Venkoba Rao who got his interview published in Prajavani and thanked them for the support that he had been getting for so many years since his Anupama days 40 years back.

Senior journalist Chiranjeevi whose real name is Gopinath Rao regretted that there were no awards given to film scribes. He said DVS family is perhaps the only one to give an award to  every one. He said DVS’s family had  also lined up to continue in this profession which is commendable.

K C N Chandrashekar said artistes should come united if Hamsalekha’s idea of a Kannada Filmfare awards function has to materialize. He announced that he will also give away an award in his father K C N Gowda’s name from next year at the annual Raghavendra Chitravani awards ceremony.

Vijayaprasad said he won the award for the second time after Siddalingu. Hemanth Rao said the award given to newcomers is an encouragement. Music composer Charan Raj said it was his first award.  H N Maruti said it is a great thing that a film publicist is giving an award to a producer.

Director Bhargava said DVS had grown because of Raghavendra Swamy’s blessings as DVS was rayaru’s bhakta. He said story is the most important thing in a film citing Thithi’s example. He also appreciated Yathiraj’s emceeing for the energy he brought to the proceedings. He also appreciated Srushti Orchestra team run by Jyothi Raviprakash.

Sa Ra Govindu said he could not assign Sri Raghavendra Chitravani to handle the publicity for the 18 films he produced but said all the press briefings that were held in KFCC were co-ordinated by Sudheendra Venkatesh. He appreciated Venkatesh for swamy bhakti and said that he did not work for money.

Jyothi Raviprakash and her Srusti Orchestra team entertained the audiences with some old songs. Yathiraj compered the evening with a lot of verve. Shreya, Souparnika and Sougandhika rendered the Ganesha stuti.

A photo exhibition was also held as a tribute to DVS. Senior lensman Veeresh  provided a number of photographs for the event. K N Nagesh Kumar, D C Nagesh, R Manohar, K S Mokshendra also contributed to the photo exhibition.

Senior photographer Pragathi Ashwathnarayana presented a rare photo of DVS with S R Puttanna Kanagal to Sunil Sudheendra, son of DVS.

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