'It is no longer about going on stage, taking your award and mumbling your thank you speech.'
'Now it's a whole big tamasha on stage.'
In a blog that has gone viral, journalist Shekhar Gupta has spoken about how film stars and star directors throw tantrums when they don't get awards.
His blog was especially harsh on Katrina Kaif who had apparently called him to her van minutes from her stage performance at an awards function to thrown a tantrum about her exclusion from the awards list.
Significantly, Gupta gave in.
An award was invented for Katrina on the spot and the problem was solved.
Katrina danced all the way to her award.
Year after year, for decades now, stars dictate who gets the awards. Or else, they refuse to attend.
Some years ago, a superstar actress was told by an awards committee that she was getting the best actress award. But when she reached the venue, she was informed another actress was being given the award. Her car did a U-turn and left from the gate.
To the pleading organisers she offered an ultimatum: 'I get the award or I don't attend.' They had to snatch the award away from the other actress and give it to the one who bullied her way into the award.
Even spouses are not spared from the greed for awards.
Some years ago, a star couple, then unmarried, were both nominated for the National Awards for their presence in an epic historical. When the husband won, and the wife didn't, she refused to attend the celebration party.
More than such tantrum-throwing stars, I blame the awards committees and jury for giving in to the pressure tactics.
Saif Ali Khan, who says he doesn't believe in the credibility of the awards, reacted to Gupta's blog on Katrina, saying, "Shekhar Gupta's piece was illuminating to some people. To me, it was no great revelation."
"I feel everyone is part of the hypocrisy of film awards, including Shekhar Gupta," says Saif. "I mean, why did he give Katrina that award if he thought she was undeserving?"
Saif feels we are not a film fraternity that celebrates one another's victory.
"The truth is, we haven't created a healthy environment for awards where one actor out of five wins an award and the other four have to clap," he adds.
"Some years ago, I was called for an awards function. When I got there, someone higher up in the organisation told me, 'We wanted to give you the Best Actor award, but you know how it is. We'll give you the award for Best Actor in a comic role.' I think he implied there's a certain amount of politics and manipulation in giving the awards."
Saif feels awards functions are a televised tamasha.
"It's a TV show. You have to go on stage and perform. It is no longer about going on stage, taking your award and mumbling your thank you speech. Now it's a whole big tamasha on stage," he says.
"Initially, it was a good idea, then the commercial aspect was introduced and that gobbled up the entire credibility of awards."