Playback singer S Janaki rejects Padma Bhushan

S-Janaki-ibnliveRenowned South Indian playback singer S Janaki today rejected the Padma Bhushan Award conferred on her by the Central Government on the occasion of the 64th Republic Day.

Ms Janaki said she had decided to reject the award as south artistes were not given due recognition and importance.The 74-year-old veteran singer said she has decided to reject the prestigious award dissatisfed over the number of people from South India figuring in the Padma awards list for 2013. ‘I’m saddened by the fact that North India has been given more prominence than south India.

I’m extremely disappointed and I refuse to accept the award’, she added. Ms S Janaki,who made made her singing debut in 1957 Tamil film ‘Vidhiyin Vilayattu‘, has sung more than 15,000 songs in an illustrious career spanning nearly five decades across all southern languages and also in Hindi. She has a good association with popular singer SP Balasubramanyam as the duo together havesung more than 1,000 songs. She has won four National Awards, besides the Tamil Nadu Government’s Kalamamani award.

‘There is a responsibility in turning down an honour and in accepting it. This honour has come too late,’ is how well known singer S Janaki’s son Muralikrishna, speaking on her behalf, said on the sweet voiced artist, who has regaled lovers of music with her inimitable style of singing, rejecting the Padma Bhushan Award conferred on the occasion of Republic Day today.

When contacted by UNI, Murali informed that Ms Janaki was away from Hyderabad where she is settled now moving from Chennai six months ago, said ‘My mother was not even intimated about the Central government’s decision to confer the honour on her. “Somebody called her and said she was being given Padma Bhushan,” he said. “It is as though the award is being given simply because one more artist is there to be honoured,” he charged, and said “accepting it would tantamount to setting a bad example.”

“Although rejecting it can also be seen as a bad example,” he said and averred “under the circumstances in which the award was given my mother rejected it.” It may be recalled that Ms Janaki had observed yesterday on being informed that she had been chosen for the Padma Bhushan award that ‘Bharat Ratna’ would have been the honour befitting her status. Murali said his mother (Ms Janaki)’s hardships and hard work she had to put in to reach her present status in the Music world was too well known. “She had set an example for many, especially to those with a health handicap like asthma. She had sung with distinction bearing this handicap of hers for years, he pointed out.

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