Minister for Information & Broadcasting Shri M .Venkaiah Naidu has said that Photography as a communication tool was an influential medium to spread awareness and ensure Good Governance. Photographs along with Social Media had been a potent combination in today’s digital world. The ‘Selfie with Daughters’ campaign launched by Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi came out to be a powerful instrument of social change. This way of posting photos created a powerful impact on societal behaviour and ingrained cultural traditions. The Minister stated this at the inaugural function of 6th National Photography Awards ceremony here today. Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore, Minister of State for Information & Broadcasting, Shri Ajay Mittal, Secretary I&B were also present on the occasion.Shri Naidu, while speaking on the role of photographs as a powerful medium of communication, quoted that “A picture is worth a thousand words”. They formed a means of artistic statement that provided insight into the thought and mental makeup of the communicator, while enabling them to transcend the limitations and boundaries of the linguistics of a written or spoken language.
Elaborating further Shri Naidu said that photographs were a powerful language which spoke to our emotions and became a part of our legacy. The photograph of a 3 year old dead Syrian child washed ashore on a beach changed the entire world opinion on the Refugee Crisis thereby shaking collective consciousness of the humanity.Speaking about the basic essence of photography, Shri Naidu said that there were no specific set of rules to take a good photograph. A photographer was not bound by technique or theory. They were free to interpret and capture the subject the way they likes. It was imperative to have the right amalgamation of art, angle and aperture to capture and process pictures, which only comes through years of practice.On the role of fast changing technology in communication domain, Shri Naidu said that the Internet has brought out the resurgence of visual image into our everyday communication. Digital cameras and cell phones with integrated cameras have generated an explosion of images into everyone’s lives. Social Media has provided a new platform to people to Share, Communicate and Inform through photographs.Shri Venkaiah Naidu conferred the Life Time Achievement Award to Shri Raghu Rai, Professional Photographer of the year award to Shri K.K. Mustafah and Amateur Photographer of the year award to Shri Ravinder Kumar. Shri Venkaiah Naidu and Col. Rathore also released the brochure of 6th National Photography Awards. Shri Naidu along with Col. Rathore also inaugurated the Photo Exhibition put by DAVP and Photo Division.
The theme for this year’s awards for Professional category was “Skilled India”, while in the Amateur category the topic was “Swatch Bharat”. The jury committee comprised the following eminent Photo Journalists. Shri S.N. Sinha, Former Editor (Photo) Hindustan Times was the chairman with Shri Dhritiman Mukherjee, Professional Wildlife Photographer, Shri K.N. Santh Kumar, Sr. Editor and Photojournalist, Kannada Daily Prajavani were the members of the committee and Shri Sanjiv Misra, Photographic officer, Photo Division was Member Secretary.Shri Raghu Rai began his career as a photographer at the age of 23 in 1965. In the early years of his career, he was the Chief Photographer at the Statesman and later the picture Editor of Sunday Magazine. He became the picture Editor – Visualizer Photographer of “India Today” where he received acclaims for his series for his series on Great Masters of Indian classical music, Satyajit Ray and Mother Teresa. In 1992, he was awarded “photographer of the year” in U.S. and was conferred “officiere des Arts et des Letters” by the Government of France. Shri Rai has also exhibited his works around the world. He continues to be an associate of Magnum Photos. He had tirelessly continued to Photograph India through the 20th Century and now into the 21st. He has done about 55 books on India on myriad themes. He also started Centre for Photography in 2011 to enhance and enrich creative explorations of young Indians.National Photography Award is an annual event organized by Photo Division a media unit under Ministry of I&B. The event is organized to promote art, technique of photography and to encourage professional and amateur photographers from all corners of the country. The Photo awards have been classified into three categories, with total of 13 awards. The awards include Life Time Achievement Award, Photographer of the year award in Professional and Amateur category with 5 Special Mention Awards in both categories each.