53rd National Film Awards

The 53rd National Film Awards, presented by Directorate of Film Festivals, the organisation set up by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, India to felicitate the best of Indian Cinema released in the year 2005.[1][2]

53rd National Film Awards
Awarded forBest of Indian cinema in 2005
Awarded byPratibha Patil
(President of India)
Presented byDirectorate of Film Festivals
Announced on7 August 2007
Presented on14 September 2007 (2007-09-14)
SiteVigyan Bhavan, New Delhi
Official websitedff.nic.in
Best Feature FilmKaalpurush
Best Non-Feature FilmRiding Solo to the Top of the World
Best BookKundan
Best Film CriticBaradwaj Rangan
Dadasaheb Phalke AwardShyam Benegal
Most awardsRang De Basanti (4)

The selection process of 53rd National Film Awards began with the constitution of three Juries for feature film, non-feature film and best writing on cinema sections, which were declared on 28 July 2006.[3] B. Saroja Devi, an yesteryear's actress, headed the feature film Jury, which had eleven other members. A documentary maker and Indian television personality Siddharth Kak headed the six-member non-feature film Jury. The Jury for best writing on cinema was headed by veteran film critic Khalid Mohamed.

The final announcement of awards was much delayed due to various controversies associated with them. Actual announcement was done almost after the 14th months of its expected announcement, after Delhi High Court gave green signal to announce the awards in all categories. Awards were scheduled to be declared on 12 May 2006.[4][5]

Awards were announced by each committee chairpersons on 7 August 2007 and ceremony took place at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi on 14 September 2007 and awards were given President of India, Pratibha Patil. It was also announced that prize money would be increased by five times and more categories would be added from next year.[6][7][8]


Awards were divided into feature films, non-feature films and books written on Indian cinema.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Name of Award Awardee(s) Awarded As Awards
Dadasaheb Phalke Award Shyam Benegal[9][10] Director Swarna Kamal, 2,00,000 and a Shawl

Feature Films

Feature films were awarded at All India as well as regional level. For 53rd National Film Awards, a Bengali film, Kaalpurush won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film; whereas a Hindi film, Rang De Basanti, won the maximum number of awards (4). Following were the awards given in each category:[1][2]


A committee headed by B. Saroja Devi was appointed to evaluate the feature films awards. Following were the jury members:[1][2][11]

All India Award

Following were the awards given:[1][2]

Golden Lotus Award

Official Name: Swarna Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Golden Lotus Award (Swarna Kamal)', a certificate and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Feature Film Kaalpurush - Memories In The Mist Bengali Producer: Jhamu Sughand[12]
Director: Buddhadeb Dasgupta
50,000/- Each
Citation: For a rare lyrical style and a unique cohesion of narrative structure and characters that allow it to flow on different planes.
Best Debut Film of A Director Parineeta Hindi Producer: Vidhu Vinod Chopra
Director: Pradeep Sarkar
25,000/- Each
Citation: For the competent directorial style to recreate a classic novel with modern cinematic sensibilities.
Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment Rang De Basanti Hindi Producer: UTV Motion Pictures and Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra Pictures (P) Ltd.
Director: Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra
40,000/- Each
Citation: For creating popular appeal that captures the angst of the younger generation with compassion and imagination.
Best Children's Film The Blue Umbrella Hindi Producer: UTV Motion Pictures
Director: Vishal Bhardwaj
30,000/- Each
Citation: For its poetic and visually stunning interpretation of a story highlighting the values of selflessness and compassion.
Best Direction Parzania English Rahul Dholakia 50,000/-
Citation: For the compelling documentation of contemporary human lives trapped in difficult times of communal hatred and violence.
Silver Lotus Award

Official Name: Rajat Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Silver Lotus Award (Rajat Kamal)', a certificate and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Feature Film on National Integration Daivanamathil Malayalam Producer: Aryadan Shoukath
Director: Jayaraj
30,000/- Each
Citation: For the powerful representation of a burning communal issue highlighting the plight of women in the times of religious intolerence.
Best Film on Family Welfare Thavamai Thavamirundhu Tamil Producer: P. Shanmugam
Director: Cheran
30,000/- Each
Citation: For the evocative portrayal of a family caught in trials and tribulations in a simple narrative style.
Best Film on Other Social Issues Iqbal Hindi Producer: Subhash Ghai
Director: Nagesh Kukunoor
30,000/- Each
Citation: For its inspiring and cinematically energetic portrayal of a hearing impaired in his aspiration to become a champion cricketer.
Best Film on Environment / Conservation / Preservation Thutturi Kannada Producer: Jaimala Ramchandra
Director: P. Sheshadri
30,000/- Each
Citation: For its imaginative portrayal of a group of young children who fight to preserve a healthy urban environment.
Best Actor Black   Hindi
Amitabh Bachchan 10,000/-
Citation: For his dramatic rendition of reformed alcoholic who struggles to give a physically handicapped child a new life.
Best Actress Parzania English Sarika 10,000/-
Citation: For her rendition of a crusading mother who fights for justice against all a diversity in a communally charged environment.
Best Supporting Actor Iqbal Hindi Naseeruddin Shah 10,000/-
Citation: For his competent depiction of an endearing man who finds it difficult to give up his addiction to alcohol but still emerges vicarious as his protégé the young village lad conquers his dream.
Best Supporting Actress Achuvinte Amma Malayalam Urvashi 10,000/-
Citation: For the highly credible performance of a brave woman who pledges her life and love for an adopted child.
Best Child Artist Bommalata – A Bellyful of Dreams Telugu Sai Kumar 10,000/-
Citation: For his haunting performance as a child who realises his burning desire to access school education.
Best Male Playback Singer Rang De Basanti
("Roo Ba Roo")
Hindi Naresh Iyer 10,000/-
Citation: For his melodious rendering of a lilting song that adds exuberance to the film.
Best Female Playback Singer Paheli
("Dheere Jalna")
Hindi Shreya Ghoshal 10,000/-
Citation: For her evocative rendition of a song that treads the fine balance between the classical and popular genre of Hindi film music.
Best Cinematography Sringaram Tamil Cameraman: Madhu Ambat
Laboratory Processing: Prasad Film Laboratories
10,000/- Each
Citation: For the technical brilliance which is evident in the framing, lighting and execution throughout the film.
Best Screenplay Apaharan Hindi   Prakash Jha
  Shridhar Raghavan
  Manoj Tyagi
Citation: For creating a crisp screenplay that is riveting and renders pace to the entire film.
Best Audiography Rang De Basanti Hindi Nakul Kamte 10,000/-
Citation: For creating a vibrant sound design that effectively supports the graph of the film.
Best Editing Rang De Basanti Hindi P. S. Bharati 10,000/-
Citation: For creating a commendable pace and multi-layered visual design that heightens the impact of the film.
Best Art Direction Taj Mahal: An Eternal Love Story Hindi C. B. More 10,000/-
Citation: For effectively recreating the mughal period and rendering life to an era.
Best Costume Design Taj Mahal: An Eternal Love Story Hindi Anna Singh 5,000/- Each
Citation: For creating costumes true to the spirit of a period film.
Black Hindi and English Sabyasachi Mukherjee
Citation: For his imaginative creations that enhanced the mood and added to ambience of the film.
Best Music Direction Sringaram Tamil Lalgudi Jayaraman 10,000/-
Citation: For bringing alive an era of great musical and dance tradition through the deft use of Indian musical instruments.
Best Lyrics Thaayi
("Baruthe Ve Nav Baruthe Ve")
Kannada Baraguru Ramachandrappa 10,000/-
Citation: For the lyric "Baruthe Ve Nav Baruthe Ve” in the Kannada film Thaayi which heightened the effect of the entire film.
Best Special Effects Anniyan Tamil Tata Elxsi 10,000/-
Citation: For highly imaginative and creative special effects that lift the style of the film.
Best Choreography Sringaram Tamil Saroj Khan 10,000/-
Citation: For authentic recreation of the devdasi tradition that has been brought out with immense grace and beauty.
Special Jury Award Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara Hindi Anupam Kher (Actor) 25,000/-
Citation: For an outstanding performance in the film that brings alive the plight of an Alzheimer’s patient who is alienated from the real world.

Regional Awards

The award is given to best film in the regional languages in India.[1][2]

Name of Award Name of Film Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Feature Film in Assamese Kadamtole Krishna Nache Producer: Suman Haripriya
Director: Suman Haripriya
20,000/- Each
Citation: For its attempt at preserving the dying culture and traditions of Assam.
Best Feature Film in Bengali Herbert Producer: Kajal Bhattacharya and Abanti Chakraborty
Director: Suman Mukhopadhyay
20,000/- Each
Citation: For a refreshingly cinematic idiom as the protagonist of this urban existential tragicomedy veers between the real and the surreal.
Best Feature Film in Hindi Black Producer: Anshuman Swami and Sanjay Leela Bhansali
Director: Sanjay Leela Bhansali
20,000/- Each
Citation: For a stylised and visually vibrant tale of a physically challenged child who learns to live and become an achiever against insurmountable odds.
Best Feature Film in Kannada Thaayi Producer: Prameela Joshai
Director: Baraguru Ramachandrappa
20,000/- Each
Citation: For its contemporary interpretation of Maxim Gorky’s classic novel against injustice and oppression.
Best Feature Film in Malayalam Thanmathra Producer: Century Films
Director: Blessy
20,000/- Each
Citation: For the moving depiction of a middle – class family which struggles to lead a dignified life in the face of the house holder’s gradual loss of memory.
Best Feature Film in Marathi Dombivali Fast Producer: Ramakant Gaikwad
Director: Nishikant Kamat
20,000/- Each
Citation: For its portrayal of an urban middle class man who breaks down under tremendous stress and pressures of life in a corrupt modern city.
Best Feature Film in Odia Kathantara Producer: Iti Samanta
Director: Himanshu Khatua
20,000/- Each
Citation: For seeking to re-establish Indian family values in the modern day situation.
Best Feature Film in Punjabi Baghi Producer: Gaj Deol
Director: Sukhminder Dhanjal
20,000/- Each
Citation: For graphically delineating the caste divide in modern day Punjab.
Best Feature Film in Tamil Aadum Koothu Producer: Light and Shadow Movie Makers
Director: T. V. Chandran
20,000/- Each
Citation: For its imaginative portrayal of a young girl who travels between past and present time zones.
Best Feature Film in Telugu Bommalata - A Bellyful Of Dreams Producer: R. K. Film Associates and Spirit Media (P) Ltd. Gunnam Ganga Raju
Director: Prakash Kovelamudi
20,000/- Each
Citation: For cinematically vibrant rendition of the story of an underprivileged through the medium of puppetry and magic.

Best Feature Film in Each of the Language Other Than Those Specified In the Schedule VIII of the Constitution

Name of Award Name of Film Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Feature Film in Bhojpuri Kab Hoi Gawna Hamar Producer: Deepa Narayan
Director: Anand D. Ghatraj
20,000/- Each
Citation: For a family drama that harks back to traditional values and modern day sensibilities.
Best Feature Film in English 15 Park Avenue Producer: Bipin Kumar Vohra
Director: Aparna Sen
20,000/- Each
Citation: For its effective and intense portrayal of a schizophrenic girl who seeks a dream world that may or may not even exist.
Best Feature Film in Monpa Sonam Producer: Garima Films
Director: Ahsan Muzid
20,000/- Each
Citation: For picturesque effective portrayal of the contemporary tribal life.

Non-Feature Films

Films made in any Indian language shot on 16 mm, 35 mm or in a wider gauge or digital format and released on either film format or video/digital but certified by the Central Board of Film Certification as a documentary/newsreel/fiction are eligible for non-feature film section.


A committee headed by Siddharth Kak was appointed to evaluate the non-feature films awards. Following were the jury members:[1][2][11]

Golden Lotus Award

Official Name: Swarna Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Golden Lotus Award (Swarna Kamal)', a certificate and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Non-Feature Film Riding Solo to the Top of the World English Producer: Gaurav A. Jani and P. T. Giridhar Rao of M/s. Dirtrack Productions
Director: Gaurav A. Jani
20,000/- Each
Citation: Made in the best tradition of Cinema verity, personal, vivid and natural. The film leads the viewer from revelation to revelation giving us an opportunity to come to love and know the "Changpas" and their unique lifestyle.
Best Non-Feature Film Direction Voices Across the Oceans English and Hindi Ganesh Shankar Gaikwad 10,000/- Each
Citation: This sensitive film uses simple, masterly non-linear storytelling to take us through a nostalgic journey of BBC’s association with India’s key defining moments in the nation’s history.

Silver Lotus Award

Official Name: Rajat Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Silver Lotus Award (Rajat Kamal)' and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best First Non-Feature Film John and Jane English Producer: Ashim Ahluwalia
Director: Ashim Ahluwalia
10,000/- Each
Citation: For an evocative film capturing the essence of call centres in urban India, its pressures and the dualities of life in this new reality.
Best Anthropological / Ethnographic Film Spirit Of The Graceful Lineage English Producer: Bibi Devi Barbarooah
Director: Prerana Barbarooah Sharma
10,000/- Each
Citation: For an interesting documentation of the unique matrilineal society of the Khasis of Meghalaya.
Best Biographical Film and Best Historical Reconstruction / Compilation Film (Jointly given) Hans Akela - Kumar Gandharva Hindi Producer: Films Division
Director: Jabbar Patel
10,000/- Each
Citation: For a film made with a deep sense of understanding of classical Music. This well researched film sensitively evokes the unique personality and contribution of Kumar Gandharva and shows the human face of his outstanding creativity.
Best Arts / Cultural Film Naina Jogin Hindi and Maithili Producer: Praveen Kumar
Director: Praveen Kumar
10,000/- Each
Citation: For a seamless film aesthetically blending fact, fiction and reconstruction with perceptive interviews bringing out the life of the Madhubani painters of Bihar.
Best Scientific Film / Best Environment / Conservation / Preservation Film Under This Sun Bengali Producer: Nilanjan Bhattacharya
Director: Nilanjan Bhattacharya
10,000/- Each
Citation: For a thought provoking film on environmental diversity with excellent Cinematography, Music, Editing and Sound Design.
Best Agriculture Film Seed Keepers Telugu and English Producer: Rajiv Mehrotra
Director: Farida Pacha
10,000/- Each
Citation: For its simple, honest portrayal of the lives of the women farmers in Andhra Pradesh and their need for addressing pertinent issues through self-empowerment using media and Technology.
Best Film on Social Issues Way To Dusty Death Hindi and English Producer: Rajiv Mehrotra
Director: Sayed Fayaz
10,000/- Each
Citation: For a Film on a little known subject that stirs the conscience and emotionally involves the viewers in the lives of the workers.
Best Investigative Film The Whistle Blowers English Producer: Rajiv Mehrotra
Director: Umesh Aggarwal
10,000/- Each
Citation: For a small film with a big impact! In the best traditions of Investigative reportage, the film highlights the burning issue of hazards to health and pollution norms.
Best Animation Film Kachua Aur Khargosh Hindi Producer: Ramesh Sharma and Uma Gajapati Raju
Director: C. B. Arun
Animator: Moving Picture Company Animation team
10,000/- Each
Citation: For its delightful adaptation and twist to the well-known Hare and Tortoise story using apt voices, lively dialogues and the latest 3D animation technique skilfully in an Indian setting.
Best Short Fiction Film Thackkayin Meedha Naangu Kangal Tamil Producer: Doordarshan and Ray Cinema
Director: Vasanth
10,000/- Each
Citation: For its moving and realistic depiction of pride, deprivation and emotion in a small coastal village of Tamil Nadu.
Best Cinematography Parsiwada, Tarapore Present Day English and Gujarati Cameraman: Paramvir Singh
Laboratory Processing: Adlabs
10,000/- Each
Citation: For its visually poetic depiction of the decadent Parsi community, with imaginative use of great lighting and compositions.
Best Audiography Closer Anmol Bhave 10,000/-
Citation: For its outstandingly imaginative use of sound design complementing an equally breath-taking visual wizardry. Closer leaves its audience with a sense of beauty and awe.
Best Editing Naina Jogin Hindi and Maithili Vibuti Nathjha 10,000/-
Citation: For its skilful editing. It is difficult to make out where one sequence ends and the other begins!
Best Narration / Voice Over Wapsi English, Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi and Kashmiri Ajay Raina 10,000/-
Citation: Spoken in the first person, the Director literally brings his personal voice into its making.
Special Jury Award Final Solution Hindi, Gujarati and English Rakesh Sharma (Director) 10,000/-
Citation: For its powerful, hard-hitting documentation with a brutally honest approach lending incisive insights into the Godhra incident, its aftermath and the abetment of large-scale violence.
Special Mention Chabiwali Pocket Watch Hindi Vibhu Puri (Director) Certificate Only
Citation: For a director’s film with competent execution of a good concept with great art direction, cinematography and performances.
Bhraimoman Theatre Assamese Bidyut Kotoky (Director)
Citation: For its fascinating picture of a cultural sub-world of Assam, capturing true moments of emotion and joy.

Best Writing on Cinema

The awards aim at encouraging study and appreciation of cinema as an art form and dissemination of information and critical appreciation of this art-form through publication of books, articles, reviews etc.


A committee headed by Khalid Mohamed was appointed to evaluate the writing on Indian cinema. Following were the jury members:[1][2][11]

Golden Lotus Award

Official Name: Swarna Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Golden Lotus Award (Swarna Kamal)' and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Book Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Book on Cinema Kundan Hindi Publisher: Saransh Prakashan
Author: Sharad Dutt
15,000/- Each
Citation: For its warm and insightful reconstruction of the life and art of the legendary singer-actor K. L. Saigal, as well as its significance as reference material which will be accessible to students and cineastes of Indian cinema history.
Best Film Critic Baradwaj Rangan 15,000/-
Citation: For intelligent and reader-friendly reviews of popular cinema with a depth of understanding of the form, a discernible passion for the medium bulwarked consistently by a knowledge of the trends and touchstones of global cinema.

Awards not given

Following were the awards not given as no film was found to be suitable for the award:[1][2]


The awards were surrounded by couple of controversies related to it. This delayed the final announcement of the awards. The year was considered as a 'zero year' for the Film Awards.[13][14]

Bombay and Delhi High Court Judgements

As per the rule, award committee judges the films which have obtained the censorship certificate from Central Board of Film Certification in order to be eligible for entry. Noted film-makers Anand Patwardhan, Gaurav Jani and Simantini Dhuru had filed a petition in the Bombay High Court asking for exemptions for their films from obtaining censor board certification. Based on this petition, the court had given judgments to consider the uncensored films as well for the awards. In spite of this judgment, juries went ahead with the existing rule and left out uncensored non-feature films.

On this judgment, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting decided to appeal in the Supreme Court of India against this verdict.

Justice B.D. Ahmed of Supreme Court then given a verdict putting aside the earlier verdict given by Bombay High Court and made compulsory for the films to have the censor board certificate. [5][7][13][14][15][16][17][18]

Favoritism for the films

Kolkata based film critic and one the juries for 53rd National Film Awards, Shyamali Deb Banerjee, had filed a petition in the Delhi High Court against the favouritism in the selection of films for the awards in the five categories and levelling charges of corruption and fixing in deciding the 53rd Awards. She alleged that there is pressure on the members of the jury by the Directorate of the Film Festivals to decide in favour of particular films. According to her, awards have been 'High Jacked' and nexus between producers, distributors and directors.

To support her claim, she sent two letters to Directorate of the Film Festivals on 13 August and 4 September 2006, in which she questioned the selection process of the awards and also alleged that preliminary round drop-out films were then selected for the awards.

She had challenged the decision to give the awards to Black for Best Film in Hindi and Best Actor, Parineeta for Best Debut Director, saying it is not an original work and is inspired with the movies released earlier on the same theme. Parzania winning the Best Director for Rahul Dholakia and Sarika for Best Actress was accused to mock the Indian democratic system. However, Hindi Film Apaharan and Tamil film Anniyan which won Best Screenplay and Best Special Effects respectively were accused of not even qualifying the preliminary rounds and then winning the awards.

However, the petition was dismissed by the court saying the petitioner had no case when the other members of the Jury had no objection to the selection of the films for the awards.[4][5][7][13][19]

Awards for Black

Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Black also faced the heat of controversy when Shyamali Deb Banerjee, one the juries for 53rd National Film Awards, alleged that film should not be given any award as it is an adaptation of the film The Miracle Worker and according to the rules no adaptations shall be given any awards. She had also filed a petition for the in the court. Though film finally won three national awards, for Best Actor, Best Costume Design and Best Feature Film in Hindi.[4][5][7][13][19]

Awards for Parzania

Shyamali Deb Banerjee had also alleged Rahul Dholakia's Parzania in her filed petition. It said that "film mocks the Indian democratic system and ends with just forming a human rights commission for a probe into the riots. This film has been banned in Gujarat and if the award for best director goes to this film, it might fan further controversy." Film won Rahul Dholakia, his first National Film Award for Best Direction and Sarika won Best Actress Award.[4][5][7][14]


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  2. "53rd National Film Awards (PDF)" (PDF). Directorate of Film Festivals. Retrieved 19 March 2012.
  3. "Juries for 53rd National Film Awards formed". Archived from the original on 2 February 2013. Retrieved 19 March 2012.
  4. "HC nod for presentation of National Film Awards". The Indian Express. 1 August 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  5. "Stay on National Film Awards vacated". The Hindu. 2 August 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  6. "Finally, the award goes to..." Hindustan Times. 15 September 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  7. "More funds for film awards next year". The Indian Express. 15 September 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  8. "Film industry must harness untapped potential: Pratibha". The Hindu. 15 September 2007. Archived from the original on 21 March 2008. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  9. "Dadasaheb Phalke Award Past Recipients". Directorate of Film Festivals. Retrieved 19 March 2012.
  10. "Finally, National Film Awards to be announced". Directorate of Film Festivals. Retrieved 19 March 2012.
  11. "53rd National Film Awards - Juries". 28 July 2006. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  12. "Lagaan producer Jhamu Sughand passes away". The Times of India. 27 May 2008. Retrieved 2 January 2016.
  13. "National Film Awards a yr late, Big B best actor". IBN Live. 7 August 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  14. "'Zero year' for national film awards". IBN Live. 21 November 2006. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  15. "National awards: Big B, Sarika win top honours". The Times of India. 8 August 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  16. "Results of national film awards kept in abeyance". The Hindu. 15 August 2006. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  17. "National Awards finally? Govt knows!". IBN Live. 13 April 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  18. "Film Awards put off indefinitely". IBN Live. 25 September 2006. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  19. "Delhi HC stays National Films Awards". The Indian Express. 9 May 2007. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
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