Guwahati: The prestigious Roopkar Awards, instituted in memory of distinguished cine-journalist and litterateur Pabitra Kumar Deka, was presented to noted Assamese actor Pranjal Saikia and national award-winning filmmaker Mridul Gupta for 2021 and 2022 respectively in a low-key function held at the premises of the Pabitra Kumar Deka Archive on January 5.
The awards, given away biennially, were presented by the state’s eminent litterateur and former editor of Asomiya Pratidin Nitya Bora.
In his keynote speech, Bora spoke about Pabitra Kumar Deka’s significant and memorable contributions to Assamese culture and literature.
“Pabitra Kumar Deka has written extensively on a wide range of film-related subjects, inspiring and mentoring a number of aspiring journalists to take up film journalism as a career. It was Deka who introduced the very concept of film publicity in Assam that really helped in garnering widespread appeal and visibility to cinema. He was a pioneer in Left-wing politics in Assam. Not many are aware of this, but he was once an active and key organiser of a political party. Undoubtedly, his indelible contribution to the field of socio-political satirical writings remains unsurpassed to this day. His unflagging enthusiasm has always been a great source of inspiration to me,” Bora said.
Purnima Pathak Saikia, who received the award on behalf of her husband Pranjal Saikia, spoke about Deka’s significant contribution to the state’s cultural heritage.
Mridul Gupta thanked the organisers for honouring him with the prestigious award. Interestingly, Gupta’s new movie in the Karbi language – Mirbeen – won the Best Asian Film at the Tokyo Film Awards 2023. The awardees also spoke about their experiences with Deka.
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The event was graced by noted film and media personalities including Hemanta Kumar Das, Jitumoni Bora, Bidyut Kumar Bhuyan, Janardan Goswami, Hemanta Debnath, Partha Pratim Borah, Emon Chaudhury, Saroj Medhi, Rana Deka, Barnali Deka Das, and Nandan Deka.
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