Rajya Sabha praises creators of ‘Naatu Naatu’, ‘The Elephant Whisperers’ on their Oscar wins

New Delhi, Mar 14 (PTI) Cutting across party lines, Rajya Sabha MPs congratulated the makers of “Naatu Naatu”, the breakout hit from the action film “RRR”, and the documentary “The Elephant Whisperers” on Tuesday for winning two Oscars in one night.

When the House met, Rajya Sabha Chairman and Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar mentioned “Naatu Naatu” for winning the Academy Award for best original song and “The Elephant Whisperers” for winning the Oscar for best documentary short film.

“The 95th Academy Awards was a moment of glory for us,” Dhankhar said. “The wins for ‘The Elephant Whisperers’ and ‘RRR’ mark a new recognition of the full spectrum of cinema that India produces.”

“The awards will further help internationalisation of the Indian film industry. These achievements also reflect global appreciation of vast talent, immense creativity and committed dedication of Indian artists,” he said, congratulating the entire team of artists associated with the two ventures for a “well-earned recognition”.

Leader of the House and Union minister Piyush Goyal said, “‘The Elephant Whisperers’ has been made by two women of eminence. It is about gender. It is about respect for our women of India. It is a great mark of recognition for India’s women.”

It is also about sustainability, which has become core to our philosophy, he said, adding the scriptwriter of RRR, V Vijayendra Prasad, is a Rajya Sabha MP.

Leader of Opposition and Congress president M Mallikarjun Kharge said it was a matter of great pride that two cinemas from southern India have won the award.

In a lighter vein, he went on to state that the BJP should not jump to claim credit for the Oscars.

“My request is that the ruling party should not take credit that we have directed, we have written the poem, or Modiji has directed this film. They should not say that is only my request. It is the contribution of the country,” he said.

His party colleague Jairam Ramesh added that the chair should not expunge these remarks.
Goyal interjected at this point but couldn’t be heard as opposition MPs objected.

“This is an occasion for collective celebration and not for narrow partisan point scoring the leader of the house is doing,” Ramesh said.

Jaya Bachchan (SP) said she was happy that the House was discussing the most important ambassadors of the country, the film fraternity.

The film fraternity has represented the country and won a number of awards, Bachchan, a popular Bollywood actress, said adding Satyajit Ray won an oscar in 1992.

“The market of cinema is here. It is not in America,” she said.

Thereafter, MPs from all parties congratulated and hailed the winners.

Sukhendu Sekhar Roy (TMC) sought a screening of “The Elephant Whisperers”, which is about a couple in South India who adopt a baby elephant and care for him, for school children to help create awareness for the environment.

Priyanka Chaturvedi of Shiv Sena (UBT) hoped the Oscars would help end the boycott culture on social media.