Indian Actress Kangana Ranaut and singer Adnan Sami received their Padma Shri awards in a ceremony in New Delhi today. President Ram Nath Kovind presented the Padma honours for 2020 at the Rashtrapati Bhawan; Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah attended.
The awards will be given out in four ceremonies held over two days. The list of awardees from the film industry also includes filmmakers Karan Johar and Ekta Kapoor; singer SP Balasubrahmanyam will receive the Padma Vibhushan posthumously.
Adnan Sami is of Pakistani origin and became an Indian citizen in 2016; his Padma Shri was widely criticised when the honours list was announced in January with the Nationalist Congress Party calling it an "insult to 130 crore Indians." Mr Sami lashed out at Jaiveer Shergill of the Congress on Twitter after the politician denounced the singer's Padma honour as "chamchagiri."
Speaking to news agency PTI after controversy erupted, Adnan Sami said, "The people who are criticising are some minor politicians. They are doing it because of some political agenda that they have and it has nothing to do with me. I am not a politician, I am a musician."
Kangana Ranaut and Karan Johar, once very public enemies, are receiving Padma Shri honours the same year - something that has not escaped comment on the Internet. Speaking to Mumbai Mirror after the honours list was announced, KJo said, "So much has been said about Kangana, me and some kind of rivalry or simmering tension.
But at every public event we've met, we've greeted each other graciously. Whatever may have been said or insinuated in print, I think I'm too old and wise to hold any kind of malice in my heart for anybody. As a filmmaker, I respect Kangana's talent, craft, and what she brings to the table. She is an actor who has proved her mettle and is deserving of the honor. Besides Ekta and Adnan Sami, I am honoured to receive the Padma Shri alongside Kangana." He also did not rule out future collaborations with the actress.