I have miles to go, says Vairamuthu
Prominent residents of Chennai were on the list of Padma awardees, announced on Saturday.
While the Padma Bhushan, one of the nation’s highest civilian awards, was given to actor Kamal Haasan, lyricist Vairamuthu and ghatam artiste T.H. Vinayakaram, a couple of doctors, industrialists, sportspersons and other film personalities were on the Padma Shri list.
The list included cinematographer Santosh Sivan, industrialist Mallika Srinivasan, Unani scholar Hakim Syed Khaleefathullah and squash player Dipika Rebecca Pallikal.
Talking to The Hindu, Mr. Vairamuthu said, “It (the recognition) will encourage me to work further for the amelioration of humanity. An award cannot be the end of the journey. It is like an oasis. I have miles to go,” he said, thanking Tamil society which, he said, had placed him on a pedestal.
Mr. Haasan also congratulated him on the occasion.
Mr. Varimuthu debuted as a lyricist in director Bharthiraja’s film ‘Nizhalgal’ and his song ‘Ithu oru pon maalai pozhuthu’ came as a breath of fresh air.
He has penned 7,500 songs and won his first national award for the film ‘Muthal Mariyathai’, starring Sivaji Ganesan.
He has penned 36 books and his novel ‘Kallikaatu Ithikasam’ won the Sahitya Akademi award in 2003. The same year, he also received the Padma Shri.
The efforts of Ghatam artiste T.H. Vinayagaram, another Padma Bhushan awardee, have helped secure a place for the instrument, which is considered ‘ubha-pakkavathyam’ in Carnatic concerts.