I present to you, Sir, Shri Dattaram Narayan Walwaikar, popularly known as Master Dattaram. Born in 1913 in Maharashtra in a family whose ancestors' occupation was wood-cutting, Master Dattaram had his initiation in drama under veteran masters of the Marathi theatre, Shri Keshavrao Datye, Shri Vishnupant Borkar and Shri Chintamanrao Kolhatkar. Master Dattaram gave his first performance at the age of five. He has been on the Marathi stage for nearly sixty years both as an actor and director. His most memorable performan-ces as an actor have been in famous historical and mytholo-gical plays, such as his portrayal of Ramashastri, Shivaji and Bhishma which won him wide acclaim. With a career spread over six decades, having performed in numerous plays, many of which have been staged for hundreds of nights, Master Dattaram is rightly regarded as a veteran whose varied contribution to Marathi Theatre is held in the highest esteem. He achieved equal eminence for his works as director. Master Dattaram is the recipient of various titles, honours and medals for his performances including an award from the Government of Maharashtra. For his eminence in the field of theatre and for his contribu- tion to its enrichment, Shri Dattaram Narayan Walwaikar receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for Acting for 1978.