The award, instituted in the memory of the late musical icon by Pune-based Sarhad known for its work in border areas and conflict zones, was presented to the Assamese filmmaker at a ceremony here last evening by former Assam chief minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta.
Barua, an alumnus of the prestigious FTII here, went down the memory lane and spoke about his early days in city as a film student and how he managed to learn Marathi.
"No one would have thought that an award based on the named of legendary Bhupen Hazarika who is from Assam would be initiated by a Pune-based organisation but Sarhad has proved that there are no boundaries when it comes to art and culture," said the Mumbai-based filmmaker, whose Assamese film "Baandhon" opened the Feature Film section of the Indian Panorama at the just concluded 43rd IFFI in Goa.
Sarhad president Sanjay Nahar said the award is an effort to enhance people-to-people contact and provide a boost to development in the northeast.
Barua has won eight National Awards till date. Known for making films with strong social messages, his "Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara", released in 2005, brought him critical acclaim.