Suriname President ChandrikapersadSantokhi, Curacao Prime Minister Eugene Rhuggenaath and New Zealand minister PriyancaRadhakrishnan were among 30 NRIs, and Indian-origin people and organizations who were conferred the PravasiBharatiyaSamman Award on Saturday, January 9th.
President Ram NathKovind, who delivered the valedictory address on the third and final day of the 16th PravasiBharatiya Divas celebrations, presented the awards at a virtual event.
The PravasiBharatiyaSamman Award (PBSA) is the highest honour conferred on overseas Indians. PBSA is conferred by the Hon’ble President of India as part of the PravasiBharatiya Divas Convention on Non-Resident Indians, Persons of Indian Origin or an organization/institution established and run by the Non-Resident Indians or Persons of Indian Origin in recognition of their outstanding achievements both in India and abroad.
The 16th edition of the PravasiBharatiya Divas (PBD) Convention was held virtually on 9th January 2021. A Jury-cum-Awards Committee with Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu as the chairman and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar as the vice chair and other distinguished members from various walks of life considered the nominations for the PravasiBharatiyaSamman Awards, 2021, and unanimously selected the awardees, the External Affairs Ministry said in a statement.”The awardees represent the vibrant excellence achieved by our diaspora in various fields. Several countries have been represented for the first time among the awardees,” it said.
MukheshAghi, president and CEO of US-India Strategic Partnership Forum, was also among the awardees.In an acceptance speech on behalf of all awardees, MrAghi said this award represents the very best of India from all over the world linking our ‘janambhumi’ (homeland) with our ‘karambhumi’ (the country where one works).”The Indian diaspora is changing the world in a gentle way. From Sciences to Academia, Arts, Politics, Philanthropy and even Hollywood, the range of contribution for the diaspora community has been immense.
The awardees also included Dr. Rajani Chandra D’Mello (Azerbaijan), BaburajanVavaKalluparambilGopalan (Bahrain), Jamal Ahmad (Botswana), JanakiramanRavikumar (Cameroon), Debashish Chaudhuri (Czech Republic), Mohammed HuseinHasanaliSardharwala (Ethiopia), BalasubramanianRamani (Germany), Lal LokumalChellaram (Hong Kong), Dr. (Prof.) MuralidharMiryala (Japan), Rajib Shaw (Japan), SalilPanigrahi (Maldives), Ravi Prakash Singh (Mexico), Mohan Thomas Lazarus Pakalomattom (Qatar), Arvind Phukan (US), Nilu Gupta (US) and SudhakarJonnalagadda (US).
Four organizations — NGO Cultural Diversity for Peaceful Future in Armenia, Sai Prema Foundation in Fiji, Indian Cultural Association in Nigeria, Federation of Indian Associations of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut — were also awarded for community service and their work for promoting cultural ties.