LAHORE: The federal government has recently changed the criteria for Pakistani artists receiving civil awards for their achievements and services in showbiz.
Besides the Presidential Award, other awards include the Lifetime Achievement Award, Tamgha e Imtiaz, Halal e Imtiaz, Sitara e Pakistan and Pride of Performances. The requirements have been changed for everyone including artists, writers, producers, singers, musicians and performers, and will be implemented in all four provinces from this year.
According to the new rules, the candidates will be judged and scored on a scale of 100 within different categories. The marks will be distributed as such: 15 for experience, 30 for creativity, 15 for exhibitions, 15 marks for charity work and the remaining 10 marks for achievements.
The Cabinet Division of the federal government, who also deals with the promotion of culture and welfare of artists, introduced the new criteria and wrote to the respective cultural departments of each province to send in their nominations for this year. The concerned departments are to select the recipients according to the requirements given.
Generally, these awards are given to those artists that have provided commendable services to their respective fields and achieved new heights, especially the Presidential Award and the Pride of Performance Award, which are considered to be the most prestigious.
In the past, numerous Pakistani TV, film, music and literature personalities have been given these awards, while others struggled to even get nominated. Many complained of the lack of a stringent criterion and claimed favouritism as well. But last year, no one received any awards due to some internal concerns which were addressed in letters written to the federal government. Therefore, to rectify the situation, the government has implemented the new merit-based system.
The departments have been asked to nominate only purely eligible artists after following the correct criteria. Once the nominations are received, the federal government will scrutinise each and every nominee and subsequently rank them.
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