June 20:The Government of India today conferred the “One Time Award for Life Time Achievement to Commemorate the 60th anniversary of India’s Independence” to the eminent film director Shri Tapan Sinha. The Award carries a cash component of Rs.10 Lakhs, a shawl and a citation. The Award was presented by the Governor of West Bengal, Shri Gopal Krishna Gandhi in the presence of the Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Shri Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi.
The Government has decided to confer three other personalities with the Award – Shri Dilip Kumar, Ms. Lata Mangeshkar and Ms. Saroja Devi. In view of Shri Tapan Sinha’s state of health the Award was presented at his residence in Kolkata.
The Award citation underlines Shri Tapan Sinha’s “….amazingly down-to-earth cinematic depiction of the struggles of the common man. His reputation as an uncompromising filmmaker, a celluloid iconoclast, puts him in a class of his own. A storyteller par excellence, Tapan Sinha’s films such as Kabuliwala (1957), Haatey Bazaare (1967), Sagina Mahato (1970), Safed Haathi (1977) are well-crafted in terms of structure and technique, exhibiting his virtuosity and capability to handle a range of subjects with equal e’lan and sensitivity.”
Shri Tapan Sinha’s work have won 19 National Film Awards in various categories apart from laurels in international film festivals like those in Berlin, Venice, London, Moscow, San Francisco and Locarno. He began his film career as a sound engineer in Kolkata’s New Theatre in 1946.. In 1950, he got the opportunity of working a Pinewood Studios in the UK where he spent two years. On returning to India, he turned his attention to film directing, making films in Bengali, Hindi and also Oriya. He made three films based on Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s works: Kabuliwala, Khudito Pashan and Atithi. Shri Sinha’s cinematic landscape traverses a journey that began with Ankush (1954) and highlighted by Upahar (1955), Tonsil (1956), Louhakapat (1957), Kalomati (1957), Hansuli Banker Upakatha (1962), Sagina Mahato (1970), Banchharamer Bagan (1980), Adalat O Ekti Meye (1982), Ek Doctor Ki Maut (1991) and Shatabdir Kanya (2001).