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Would have declined award but for her: Chiranjeevi

The 16th edition of Santosham South India Film Awards ceremony was held on Sunday at Hyderabad's JRC Convention Centre.  Megastar Chiranjeevi received an award from iconic singer S Janaki.  He praised late Sridevi and appreciated director Sankalp and fight masters Ram-Laxman during his speech.  

Speaking on the occasion, the 'Sye Raa' actor said, "I had told Suresh Kondeti that I will make it to the event only if they don't give me any award.  But he cheated me by having Janaki garu give an award to me.  I am now locked.  I can't say no to her giving me an award.  I am very happy because this is the first time that I am taking an award from her hands!  I thank Suresh for this proud moment.  Had it been anybody else giving me the award, I would have declined because I think such awards should be given away to fresh talent.  It would infuse them with enthusiasm.  Others will be inspired by them.  The industry needs new actors and technicians."

"It's a good development that an award has been instituted in memory of Sridevi.  Although I have acted with so many heroines, those four films on which I worked with her will always be remembered by me.  'Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka Sundari' will always be a beautiful memory to me.  Sridevi was always the same person right from the beginning till end.  Some of them change as persons after achieving star status.  But Sridevi remained the same down-to-earth person that she always ways.  That's why she became the No. 1 star heroine both in South and North Indias.  She was an all-India lady superstar.  I congratulate Tamannaah upon receiving the award instituted in the name of such an actor," Chiru said.  

He praised Sankalp of 'Ghaazi' fame as a man of action.  "He is doing a space thriller with our Varun Tej as the hero.  I have seen some visuals of the movie.  They are so good," he added.

The Megastar appreciated Ram-Laxman duo for making big in an industry despite coming from a humble background.  "In olden days, a fight master named Raju used to compose most fights for me.  Ram-Laxman duo joined as assistants under him.  Today, all heroes are after the dates of these two brothers.  If their dates are not available, they are ready to postpone action scenes," he signed off.