The megastar of this millennium from Bollywood, Amitabh Bachchan, was awarded honorary doctorate on a flashy evening ceremony in Australia. The award featured congratulations from celebrated director of Hollywood Baz Luhrmann.
Earlier when he was offered the honor he had turned down the offer in 2009. Two years back the Queensland University of Technology wanted to confer the award to Amitabh but the actor turned down the proposal keeping in mind the wave of violent attacks on Indian students that stained and estranged the diplomatic relations of Canberra and India.
But now when things are resolved and fallen in place the 69 year old feels that he is ready to receive the honor. “It’s been a very warm welcome. I’ve only been seeing smiling faces and experiencing great hospitality. That was something that was an aberration and it’s over now,” Bachchan said of the attacks.
Amitabh Bachchan was bestowed the honorary doctorate on Thursday, awarded for his “outstanding contribution to creative industries over several decades”, in a cherished ceremony in Brisbane. The highlight of the event was a video-link appearance by Luhrmann.
Bachchan has also launched a creative industries scholarship and wishes to strengthen the relationship of Australia with India. The scholarships are in name of his late father Dr. Harivansh Rai Bachchan.
Amitabh Bachchan, who has just finished work on the Australian director’s remake of The Great Gatsby featuring Leonardo DiCaprio in Sydney said, “Education helps us to strengthen and fortify convictions not to be swayed by preoccupation of cast and creed, race and religion. I do believe large numbers of Indian students seek education in Australia and I hope that continues to grow.”
Adding further he said, “To find myself in a foreign country, and to have this recognition from them is truly amazing. I do not have enough words to thank you for having bestowed on me this great honor. I value it a lot.”