Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI: Three times National Award winning Assamese filmmaker Jahnu Barua is miffed over being nominated in the best debut director category at the upcoming Hero Honda 12th Annual Star Screen Weekly Awards for his film "Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara".

The director has dashed off an angry letter to the organisers asking them to delete his name. Calling it an "insult", Mr. Barua said nominating someone who has won 23 international awards and whose films have won as many as three National Awards in the best debut category showed the ignorance of the organisers and the bias against regional filmmakers.

Announced on Sunday, the nomination pits Mr. Barua against newcomers like Mohit Suri (Zeher), Pradeep Sarkar (Parineeta) and Shoojit Sircar(Yahaan). "After 10 feature films and many awards including a Padma Shri for excellence in cinema, how can they consider me for the best debut category. It is insulting and just shows how regional directors are treated," the director said. With the film not even being Mr. Barua's first Hindi feature, the director is not even amused by the possibility of the mistake having been done under the assumption of the movie being his debut in Hindi.

"If suppose Richard Attenborough or Steven Spielberg decided to make a film in Hindi, would they put them under the best debut category," said an angry Mr. Barua.

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