Renowned South Indian singer S Janaki has refused to accept the Padma Bhushan award, India's third highest civilian honour, conferred on her by the government of India.
The 74-year-old Kerala based singer, Sishtla Sreeramamurthy Janaki, who is popularly known as S. Janaki, told a Malayalam news channel that the award came too late and rued that South Indians are largely ignored for the Padma awards. The famous playback singer known for her voice modulation skills has sung in most south Indian languages- Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil. She also sang in Hindi.
S Janaki said she is happy the selection of her name but she would not accept it.
Media reports quoted her saying that she was aggrieved that Padma awards are given to North Indians mostly.
Famous South Indian singer S. Janaki refused to accept Padma Bhushan, the third highest honour of the nation. Speaking to a news channel in Malayalam, she said the honour was given to her lately. However, she expressed happiness for considering her name for the award.She also pointed that not much South Indian people were considered for the award. " North Indians were honoured much," she added.
She has been singing for the past nearly 56 years and has recorded over 20,000 songs, besides winning four National Film Awards and 31 different State Film Awards. Her association with singer S. P. Balasubramanyam and composer Ilaiyaraaja is among the most popular musical combinations in South India.
She is a recipient of an Honorary doctorate and the Kalaimamani award from Tamil Nadu State Government.
India's highest civilian awards were announced by the government on Saturday on various fields with the President approving the conferment of 108 Padma Awards that feature this year names like cricketer Rahul Dravid, fashion designer Ritu Kumar and Bollywood performers like Sridevi, Sharmila Tagore and late superstar Rajesh Khanna.
The awards this year comprise four Padma Vibhushan, 24 Padma Bhushan and 80 Padma Shri Awards. A total of 24 of the awardees are women and the list also includes 11 persons in the category of Foreigners, NRIs, PIOs and Posthumous awardees.