Chief Guest Shri Venkaiah Naidu, Hon’ble Vice President of India Felicitates 41st Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation Award Winners

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Mumbai, November 16, 2018: Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation today at its annualaward function recognized four exemplars in the field of humanitarian and social work. The achievers were felicitated at the 41st Jamnalal Bajaj Awards ceremony by Chief GuestHon’ble Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, at the event presided byShri CH. Vidyasagar Rao, Hon’ble Governorof Maharashtra and in presence of Guest of Honour Shri DevendraFadnavis, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Shri Rahul Bajaj, Chairman, Board of Trustees of Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation, Dr. Justice C. S. Dharmadhikari (Retd.), Chairman, Council of Advisors of the Foundation, Members of the Council of Advisor of the Foundation and the august gathering.

The awardis an annual function held to commemorate birth anniversary of Shri Jamnalal Bajaj; where the Foundation recognizes and honours the achieversin the fields of humanitarian activities and Gandhian constructive programmes by presenting them with a Citation, a Trophy and a prize amount of Rs. 10,00,000 in each category.

Since its establishment in 1977, Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation instituted four awards to honour the exemplary contributionof individuals who have vowed to selflessly serve the people, their community and nation, at large. The awards aim at propagation of Gandhian principles and ideals on which Shri Jamnalalji lead his life. The awards are given in three national and one international category.

The details of the awards for this year(2018) are:

Award Category Awardee Name and Title State / Country
Award for outstanding contribution in the field of Constructive Work Shri Dhoom Singh Negi, Gandhian &Social Activist Uttarakhand
Award for Application of Science & Technology for Rural Development Smt. Rupal Desai & Sri Rajendra Desai, Hon. Joint Directors, National Centre for People’s Action in Disaster Preparedness Gujarat
Award for Development and Welfare of  Women and Children (Instituted in memory of Smt. Jankidevi Bajaj) Smt. Prasanna Bhandari, Convener, Shri Karni Nagar Vikas Samiti Rajasthan
International Award for Promoting Gandhian Values Outside India Dr. Clayborne Carson, Founding Director, The Martin Luther King Jr.Research and Education Institute United States of America

Mr. Rahul Bajaj, Chairman, Board of Trustees, Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation addressing at the occasion said, “It is always a moment of pride for us to honour such individuals who have relentlessly worked towards making the world a better place. These individuals are shining examples of working selflessly and they reiterate the philosophy of Gandhian principles. These achievers have passionately, thoughtfully, and nobly impacted the society and its people. They truly represent the ethos and fundamentals of the Gandhian way of life”.

About the 2018 Winners

Shri Dhoom Singh Negi

Recipient of the Award for Outstanding Contribution in the field of Constructive Work – 2018

Shri Dhoom Singh Negi, also known as Guruji in the region, is a passionate social worker in the Himalayan region of Uttarakhand, who has led many movements in the Uttrakhand region.

Following is a brief description of activities undertaken by SHRI DHOOM SINGH NEGI:

  • His contribution to the struggle and constructive work has been during the Chipko movement and later movements relating to environment protection.
  • Shri Negi has taken part in Gram Swaraj of Gandhiji-Vinobaji and actively participated in the many programmes of social transformation.
  • Later in his lifetime, Shri Negi gave up his teaching profession to dedicate his life for a social cause and to join the Sarvodaya movement.
  • His Satyagraha has always been to oppose the illegal system, unfair practices and injustice.
  • Shri Dhoom Singh encouraged and promoted tree plantation for forest conservation in the Himalayan region. He set up Nursery to distribute saplings/plants to the villagers. Plants fulfilling the 5 Fs viz. Food, Fodder, Fertilizer, Fuel and Fibre were planted. To date, 90% of those plants are surviving.

SmtRupal Desai & Shri Rajendra Desai
Recipients of the Award for Application of Science and Technology for Rural Development – 2018

Smt. Rupal Desai, an architect and Shri Rajendra Desai, a structural engineer, shifted from their career in corporate world, modern steel and timber architecture and petrochemical plants in the USA to voluntary sector in India in 1984. They eventually decided to work for rural India with two resolutions, first to put to use their technical background for the betterment of the people and community in rural India and the second was to work not to earn their living.

Following is a brief description of activities undertaken by SMT RUPAL DESAI & SHRI RAJENDRA DESAI:

  • They leveraged modern science and technology concepts towards rural housing to meet the challenges of the changing local context in a sustainable manner.
  • In 1993, building post- earth-quake damage assessment mission to Latur, they spent six years with the focus on building local capacity to ensure future earthquake risk reduction. They worked on training of over 1,000 artisans and 550 government engineers, and educating people through posters, brochures, and manuals.
  • They have also strived to save more than 750 existing traditional masonry buildings from the catastrophe when hit by an earthquake through retrofitting,
  • They firmly believe that building local capacity in the use of traditional building technologies with the infusion of modern science and technology in line with the Gandhian principles of simplicity, self-reliance only can bring longer lasting, affordable, disaster resistant houses that would help restore peoples’ pride in them. It would also spread the safety net with minimal contribution to global warming to ensure sustainability for coming generations.

Smt Prasanna Bhandari
Recipient of the Award for Development and Welfare of Women and Children – 2018

Smt Prasanna Bhandari is the Convener and guiding light of Shri Karni Nagar Vikas Samiti, Kota (SKNVS). She works for the cause of the deserted and relinquished infants, destitute children, distressed women and girls and the helpless aged persons.

Following is a brief description of activities undertaken by SMT PRASANNA BHANDARI:

  • As a child, Smt Bhandari followed her father working for social cause in the neighbourhood. Later she also worked at refugee camps in Kolkata. Even after marriage, Smt Bhandari found ways to continue her work. She picked up abandoned children and distressed women and looked after them till they were adopted or could move on with their lives.
  • Doing Sevaof the deserted and distressed children and women is close to her heart.
  • Shishugriha is an infant care nursery for abandoned infants. Since its inception in 1977, more than 900 such children have been legally adopted by willing couples.
  • Balgriha – a destitute children’s home with the present capacity for 120 children, takes care of the food, shelter and educational needs of the grown up boys in the age group of 6 to 18 years. In the 50 years of service, around 3000 boys have been taken care of.
  • Similarly Balikagriha is a home for the destitute girls aged 6-18 years, which is presently taking care of 45 girls. 200 girls have been married or integrated into mainstream society.
  • Rehabilitation process, counseling and skill training for women are an integral part of SKNVS’s
  • She has initiated and uplifted the lives of women and children with a multi-dimensional and holistic approach.
  • Smt Bhandari presently heads the Kota branch of BhagwanMahaveerViklangSahayata Samiti, Jaipur(BMVSS) as President. 

Dr. Clayborne Carson

Recipient of the International Award for Promoting Gandhian Values outside India – 2018

Dr. Clayborne Carson had a longstanding interest in the impact of Gandhian ideas on King and the African-American freedom movement which led him to teach a course on Gandhi and King in 2008.

Following is a brief description of activities undertaken by DR. CLAYBORNE CARSON:

  • Clayborne Carson during his student years participated in movements for human rights and joined Martin Luther King at the age of 19 for the historic 1963 march to Washington D.C.
  • His scholarly writings have stressed the importance of grassroots organizing and nonviolent resistance to injustice.
  • In 1985, Mrs. Coretta Scott King, wife of Martin Luther King, Jr. invited historian Dr. Carson to direct a long-term project to edit and publish a comprehensive edition of her late husband’s speeches, correspondence, publications and unpublished writings.
  • Carson’s online social network – The Gandhi-King Community: For Global Peace with Social Justice in a Sustainable Environment has over 1600 members.
  • He currently teaches a free online course called “American Prophet: The Inner Life and Global Vision of Martin Luther King, Jr.” which is inspired by Gandhian values.
  • Through lectures Dr. Carson has presented King’s ideas to world covering more than twenty European, African, and Asian nations.

Corporate  Comm India(CCI Newswire)