Actor Rajkummar Rao, whose portrayal of an official tasked with conducting polls in the Naxal-affected areas of Chhattisgarh in the Hindi film "Newton" won accolades, was on Thursday inducted as a National Icon by the Election Commission.
Facing youth and urban apathy with many preferring to stay home than turn up at polling stations to cast their votes, the EC appoints prominent Indians as national icons to motivate voters to participate in elections.
The poll panel comprising Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar and Election Commissioners Anup Chandra Pandey and Arun Goel exchanged a memorandum of understanding with Rao appointing him as an EC icon.
Rao's portrayal as a principled government clerk who is determined to conduct a free-and-fair election in the Naxal-affected areas of Chhattisgarh, overcoming the cynicism and apathy of a security officer, won accolades.
The movie won the National Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi and was also India's nominee for the Best Foreign Language Film category at the 90th Academy Awards, popularly known as Oscars.
Earlier, the EC recognised actors Pankaj Tripathi and Aamir Khan, and sportspersons such as Sachin Tendulkar, M S Dhoni and M C Mary Kom, as national icons.