Akshay Kumar is one of the top Bollywood stars. If figures have any meaning, he is also the star who pays the highest income tax. The star also has a patriotic streak and has set up a foundation to help widows of Indian soldiers killed in battle with terrorists. Akshay's latest film " Rustom" has also been a hit at the box office. The jury for the 2016 National Awards has selected him as the Best Actor for his role as the navy officer who murders his wife's lover. The film is an out and out thriller and Akshay put in a wonderful performance. He looks every inch the navy officer replete with medals.

The award is justified.

National award

The film also stars newcomer Ileana D'cruz, while the role of the wife's lover is well played by Arjan Bajwa. The best actress National award was won by Sonam Kapoor and the news of the award filtered through when both Sonam and Akshay were shooting together for a new film. it was a matter of joy for both of them. However, the entire film is carried forward by Akshay who hogs the screen with a brilliant performance. The film is based on a real-life love story of the fifties. Though the producer denies that the film is based on any true incident and if there is any similarity it is coincidental, the film is based on the famous Nanavati case.

Nanavati case

Commander Nanavati shot dead his wife's lover - a Bombay-based businessman Prem Ahuja.

He was sentenced to life in prison but was pardoned by the government and migrated to the USA. In the film, the story is changed slightly and the jury acquits the commander. In real life too, the jury acquitted Nanavati, but the judge referred the case to the high court by setting aside the jury verdict by stating it a " perverse verdict." The trial is important because it marked the end of trial by jury in India.

Akshay as the naval commander dons the uniform with aplomb. There are some shots of the aircraft carrier which was inducted into the Indian navy, but these shots could have been handled better. Full marks to Akshay who has lived the role of a navy officer. The film is a taut thriller but it does not have repeat value and thus was a shade behind the release of the Salman Khan film " Sultan".

Last word

Akshay is the only top Hindi film actor, who is a non-Muslim in Bollywood, as the other three top stars Salman, Shahrukh, and Aamir are Muslims. One can say this is an example of Indian secularism. The award is also a recognition by the government of the patriotic work being done by Akshay for widows of soldiers killed in combat. It's his first national award.