Gandhian “Warriors” honoured at 45th Jamnalal Bajaj Awards 2023
The Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation honoured winners for their exemplary efforts in the field of humanitarian and social work at the 45th edition of the Jamnalal Bajaj Awards held on 8th December 2023. The four awardees were felicitated at the annual award function in the presence of the Chief Guest – Hon’ble Dr Justice Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud, Chief Justice of India; Shekhar Bajaj, Chairman, Board of Trustees of Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation, Members of the Council of Advisers of the Foundation and the august gathering. Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi is the Trustee of the Foundation and Dr. R. A. Mashelkar, Former Director General, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, Chairman of National Innovation Foundation also serves as a Chairman, Council of Advisers of the Foundation.
Since the institution of these awards, the Foundation commemorates the birth anniversary of Shri Jamnalal Bajaj every year. As a tribute to the great man on this special occasion, the Foundation felicitated achievers in the field of humanitarian activities and Gandhian constructive programmes by presenting them with a Citation, a Trophy and a Cash Prize.
In a special tribute to the Centennial Celebrations of the Birth Anniversary of Shri Ramkrishna Bajaj, Founder of the Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation, it has elevated the prize money from Rs. 10,00,000/- to Rs. 20,00,000/- (or its equivalent in foreign exchange for the International Award) in each award category, effective from 2023 awards.
The awardees are as follows:
- Award for Constructive Work – Dr. Regi George and Dr. Lalitha Regi (Trustees, Tribal Health Initiative, Tamil Nadu)
- Award for Application of Science and Technology for Rural Development – Dr. Ramalakshmi Datta (Joint Director, Vivekananda Institute of Biotechnology, West Bengal)
- Award for Development and Welfare of Women and Children – Sudha Varghese (Secretary, Nari Gunjan, Bihar)
- International Award for Promoting Gandhian Values Outside India – Raha Naba Kumar (Director & CEO, Gandhi Ashram Trust, Bangladesh)
Shekhar Bajaj, Chairman, Board of Trustees, Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation addressing at the occasion said, “Each year, the Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation Awards take us on a profound journey, uncovering the stories of unsung heroes committed to selfless service. Our purpose is to acknowledge and champion these individuals whose unwavering dedication propagates the noble ethos of Gandhian values. We are humbled by the substantial increase in nominations, a testament to the growing recognition of individuals who embody Gandhian values. Congratulations to all the winners; your efforts are instrumental in transforming societies, and we urge others to join in creating a better world.”
Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi, Trustee – Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation while addressing the august gathering said “Even in the event of a new generation being born here, a single candle can break through millions of years of darkness and remind the younger generation that the sun will rise eventually. Our awardees are these lighted candles. Listening to their words today, I felt that Gandhiji cannot die; no one can kill Gandhi. Where there is truth, where there is talk of bringing smiles, where there is a desire for peace, love, and compassion, there Gandhi is alive.”
Dr. R. A. Mashelkar, Chairman, Council of Advisers stated, “Our Gandhian Warriors have made yeoman contributions in preserving, propagating, and practising Gandhian values. We salute not only their inspiring life and work but also the way. It is with such amazing perseverance and passion, they have pursued a noble purpose, to create a better world for all, with timeless Gandhian values.”
Chief Guest – Hon’ble Dr Justice Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud, Chief Justice of India in his keynote address stated “While many of those nations have faltered achieving independence and struggling with true self-governance, India stands out. Our ability to sustain democracy is unique. Some attribute this to our internalized democratic and constitutional values, while others point to our democracy’s foundation in inclusion and pluralistic culture, embracing humanity. Our winners, who work within communities, exemplify the unique ability to step into the background, contribute to the greater good, and assist the less fortunate, distinguishing us as a civilization. I am honoured to be part of this event; one I admired while growing up. My heartfelt homage goes to the enduring legacy of Jamnalal Bajaj, including the Centennial Anniversary of the Founder of the Foundation, Shri Ramkrishna Bajaj.”
For more information on Jamnalal Bajaj Awards, visit: www.jamnalalbajajawards.org/awards-2023