Dilip Kumar conferred with Padma Vibhushan

Dilip Kumar conferred with Padma Vibhushan

Legendary Bollywood actor Dilip Kumar was conferred with the coveted Padma Vibhushan, the second-highest civilian honour, at the thespian’s Pali Hill residence in Mumbai, on Sunday.

The 93-year-old actor was accompanied by his wife Saira Banu, when Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh conferred the award on him. Maharashtra Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis were also present on the occasion.

“It’s a great honour for us... it has been a momentous occasion for the family and we are happy that India’s Home Minister Rajnath Singh, personally came to Mumbai to present the award,” said Saira Bano.

“Dilip Kumar has created such a niche for himself over the last 40-50 years, that almost every artiste regards him as a role model” the home minister added.

The Padma Vibhushan award for Mohammad Yusuf Khan aka Dilip Kumar was announced on the Republic Day of 2015 for his exceptional and distinguished service. Dilip Kumar was to receive the Padma Vibhushan at a ceremonial function at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on April 8, 2015 in New Delhi, but he could not attend the ceremony due to his ill health.

Dilip Kumar turned 93 on December 11. His acting skills and dialogue-delivery are not only idolised in India, but also across the world. While Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan describe him one of the “greatest actors ever”, the late Satyajit Ray described him as “the ultimate method actor”. He is a recipient of the coveted Padma Bhushan and the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, he was also a former Rajya Sabha member.

In 1943, actress Devika Rani, and her husband Himanshu Rai who owned Bombay Talkies spotted Dilip Kumar and cast him in a lead role in their film Jwar Bhata (1944), which marked Dilip Kumar's entry into the Bollywood film industry. Hindi author Bhagwati Charan Varma gave him the screen name Dilip Kumar. He went on to appear in many hit films including Mela (1948), Andaz (1949), Deedar (1951), Devdas (1955) and Yahudi. 

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