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Overjoyed: Padma Shri awardee Kumar Sanu in New Delhi on Thursday.
Overjoyed: Padma Shri awardee Kumar Sanu in New Delhi on Thursday.

Bollywood playback singer Kumar Sanu says receiving the coveted Padma Shri from the Government – which he did on Republic Day this year -- is a special honour for him.

“Although the award has come late, nevertheless I am overjoyed to receive it because it is the most respected award given by the government. I had been longing for the Padma Shri for the past 20 years,” said the star singer at the Press Club of India in the Capital on Thursday.

“I have refused a number of films because I don’t want to sing mediocre songs and disappoint my fans. In fact, I consider myself lucky not singing the kind of playback songs that feature in Hindi films these days. I want to sing semi-classical songs that touch the heart. I have sung about 80 songs for upcoming Hindi films,” he said.

Revealing the story of his home production, “Yeh Sunday Kyon Aata Hai?”, Kumar Sanu said all the four boys who play cobblers in the film were in real life shoe-shine boys until he took them under his wings.

“A rich man’s son looks forward to enjoying his Sunday every week but what about the street children who don’t get much work on holidays? This film has a message, and if it makes money then I will buy kholis for all four of them. In Bollywood if one theme clicks, then 14 movies with identical stories go on the floor. So if my film does good business, then other film-makers would be encouraged to make movies on street children, who would benefit in the long run,” he said.

Criticising the concept behind reality shows so much in vogue on TV channels these days, Kumar Sanu said: “If film industry musicians who are working as judges don’t have the power to vote for the best singer then what is the point of inviting them for such shows? If the public can vote through SMS then we should do away with the judges. A singer from Uttar Pradesh will automatically get more votes than a talented singer from Chhattisgarh….”

Madhur Tankha

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