Irrfan Khan winning the Best Actor Award at the recently announced National Awards was welcomed by one and all. Unlike the other awards, there is a lot of credibility associated with the National Awards since actors from across the board compete for the honour decided by an esteemed panel of jury. However, even National Awards is not above board and Bollywood stars especially have often been accused of using unfair means to get a trophy! Here are the biggest scandals that the Awards have faced in recent times.
KIRRON KHER (2000)
Kirron Kher, won the Best Actress award for her sensitive performance in the Bengali film Bariwali. But it was then claimed that her voice in the film was actually dubbed by another woman, Rita Koiral, a charge Kirron rubbished. Interestingly, the film was produced by her husband, Anupam Kher. Kirron claimed that she had to spend a lot of time rehearsing the dialogues and even appeared on television speaking in Bengali to prove her fluency in
ANIL KAPOOR (2001)
Anil Kapoor's awards – be they Filmfare or National Awards – have often been embroiled in controversy. When he was awarded the Best Actor for his work in Rajkumar Santoshi's Pukar, several people were aghast since Pukar wasn't exactly a great film nor was his performance the best ever. The movie even won the award for Best Film on National Integration, which was again debated since it was felt another regional movie deserved it more. Moreover Anil was up against seasoned Bengali actor Soumitra Chatterjee who then had to make do with a lesser award. But Anil was hardly
bothered. "Every award of mine has been dogged with debates and disagreements. This award is special because it was a home production nothing can ruin it for me."
RAVEENA TANDON (2001)
A hardcore commercial actress like Raveena was thrilled when she was declared the Best Actress for Daman, beating Karisma Kapoor, who had come up with excellent performances in Fiza and Zubeida that year. However her happiness was marred when there were accusations of favouritism. Raveena's maternal uncle actor, Mac Mohan, was on the panel and other jury members said it reeked of nepotism. Three jury members even resigned from the panel in protest!
AJAY DEVGN (2003)
Ajay rightly got the best actor award for The Legend of Bhagat Singh. Drama arose after famous Malayalam director Adoor Gopalakrishnan said Prakash Jha, heading the panel then, influenced the win (Jha was directing Ajay in Gangajal). While no one doubted Ajay's credibility, a war of words ensued between the two filmmakers.
SAIF ALI KHAN (2005)
Perhaps few awards raised as much brouhaha as this one! Saif was charming as the happy-go-lucky lover in Hum Tum but certainly it wasn't an award-worthy performance! Saif himself was taken aback! It was a year when SRK was in the running for Swades. Rumour mongers insisted Saif's mum Sharmila Tagore's position as the censor board chief had something to do with his Best Actor award.
ARJUN RAMPAL (2008)
Arjun performed pretty well in Rock On!!. But was his performance National Award worthy? There were whispers that a politician had influenced his Best Supporting Actor trophy.