Udupi: Strongly objecting to well known actor, Prakash Raj, being awarded the ‘Shivarama Karanth Huttura Prashasti’, despite his remarks against PM Narendra Modi, BJP leaders Shobha Karandlaje and Kota Shrinivas Poojary, among others, have decided to boycott the award function on Tuesday and local BJP leaders have threatened to hold a protest at the venue.
The award is conferred on achievers in literature, journalism, education, environment and Yakshagana. An a-political committee selects the recipient and the award is conferred by the Kotatattu Gram Panchayat.
Although Mr Prakash Raj was selected unanimously by the panel about two months ago, his recent statements criticising Mr Modi for his silence on the murder of journalist/activist Gauri Lankesh and Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath have drawn the wrath of the BJP.
The party, however, did not openly oppose the award until Sunday as the Kotatattu Gram Panchayat organising the event is supported by its own members. But it was singing a different tune on Monday. “I will not attend the event. There are ideological differences between our party and Prakash Raj and so I prefer not to attend the event where he is being conferred the award,” MLC Kota Shrinivas Poojary told DC.
As for Member of Parliament Shobha Karandlaje, she tweeted, “I strongly object to the Dr Shivaram Karanth award being presented to actor Prakash Raj. Committee should reconsider its decision.”
Udupi district BJP chief, T V Hegde too said the party had decided not to attend the event. As for Kundapur BJP president, Suresh Shetty, he said while they were neither against the Karanth Foundation nor the organisers, they were against the actor being conferred the award. “We will hold a black flags protest at the venue,” he added....