‘Award Wapsi – Protest or Opportunism’

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“The people who are returning their awards need to be reminded that these awards were bestowed up on them not by any government but by a nation of 121 crore people.”

Indians have been trend setters in various fields and history books provide evidence to support this assertion quite well. The most recent trend is visible in the form of “Award Wapsi.”

The awardees, ranging from filmmakers and writers to artists and actors, have been walking upto their district officers and returning awards with which they have been honoured by the nation. They are doing this in protest of what they perceive as the rising intolerance in the nation. The awards  include Sahitya Academy awards and national awards among others.

A group of celebrities including Anupam Kher and Madhur Bhandarkar, hasposed a relevant question – “Why not also return the monetary benefit which came along with the awards?” The people who are returning the awards need to be reminded that these awards were bestowed up on them not by any government but by a nation of 121 crore people.  

Perhaps the awardees returning their awards need to introspect whether they are not being a tad hasty in assigning blame. Baba Ram Dev’s words in this regard are worth quoting, “These incidents of intolerance are disheartening but the central government and its allies are not responsible for every mishappening.”

Issues of intolerance can be sorted out by discussion with the cabinet. Providing suggestions is also a good path, but ‘Award Wapsi’ harms the reputation of India all over the world.