In order to celebrate Puneeth Rajkumar’s legacy, the government of Karnataka has decided on bestowing the state’s highest civilian honor, Karnataka Ratna, upon the late actor. The special announcement came about at the recently held ‘Puneeth Namana’ event which saw many of Puneeth’s colleagues from the film fraternity (including those from Telugu and Tamil industries) convene along with the big-wigs of the state’s politics.
Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai took the stand at the event, organized at the Palace Grounds of Bengaluru, where he spoke about Puneeth Rajkumar’s grand legacy as both a film personality and a noble philanthropist. CM Bommai would later announce that the government has chosen Puneeth to be the tenth recipient of the Karnataka Ratna honor, to make him only the second actor in the list of revered names.
“I have discussed the matter with several others and we have decided together to posthumously honor Puneeth Rajkumar with the Karnataka Ratna award,” said CM Basavaraj Bommai in his speech.
The Karnataka Ratna award was introduced back in the year 1992 with Rashtrakavi Kuvempu as the first recipient of the honor (again posthumously). Dr. Rajkumar, Puneeth’s father and the matinee idol, was to soon join the list as the second person to be honored with Karnataka Ratna for his immense contribution to the worlds of cinema and music. Dr. Raj remained the only awardee thus far from the film or music fraternity.