A goof up and a protest has led to two of the nominees rejecting the awards this year.

Why two nominees have rejected the Karnataka Rajyotsava awards
news Awards Wednesday, November 01, 2017 - 12:53

Oversight on behalf of the Department of Kannada and Culture, has resulted in Mysuru-based folklorist PK Rajashekhar being listed for the Rajyotsava Prashasti twice.

The Kannada and Culture Department, which selects awardees for the Rajyotsava Prashati had awarded Professor Rajashekhar in 2005.

On Tuesday, the folklorist announced that he would not accept the 2017 award.

“I did not even receive any notification from the government. I was surprised when I saw the list of awardees in the media on Monday. I was initially confused because it was being given to me for the second time. You get Rajyotsava Prashati only once. I called the officials of the Kannada and Culture Department on Tuesday and informed them of the error,” Professor Rajashekhar told TNM.

In 2005, Professor Rajashekhar had received the award during the Suvarna Karnataka Rajyotsava celebrations. He was a Professor of Kannada language at Maharaja's College, and was awarded the Rajyotasva Prashati in the folklore category.

“I have decided that I will not accept the award once more. I have informed the Director of the Department of Kannada and Culture, NR Vishu Kumar about my decision. I have also intimated Kannada and Culture Minister Umashree,” he added.

According to Director NR Vishnu, the department is looking into the matter. “There must have been a mistake somewhere. We did not know that his name was selected for the second time until after the list of awardees was published. The issue has been resolved now as Professor Rajashekhar has informed the department that he will not accept the award,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dr Ravindranath Shanbhag, President of the Human Rights Protection Foundation (HRPF), on Monday evening, said that he would not accept the Rajyotsava Prashati.

“This is a mark of protest against the lackadaisical implementation of the Maintenance and Protection of Senior Citizens Act,” Dr Shanbhag told TNM.

“I have been approached by many senior citizens who have requested help in several cases. Twenty three senior citizens had approached HRPF for help, eight have passed away and yet the act is not being implemented despite the tribunal order passed in their favour. I have approached the concerned ministers and bureaucrats, but nothing has happened,” Dr. Shanbhag said.

He said the lack of interest on behalf of the government had disappointed him. “This is a sad state of affairs. When I received the invitation for the award, I declined it. I will ask them about the inaction regarding the Maintenance and Protection of Senior Citizens Act,” he said.


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