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Thursday, February 29, 2024

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Thursday, February 29, 2024

Ratan Tata, Lovlina, Covid warriors, among Assam’s highest civilian awards winners

Notably, this is the first time the Assam government has introduced a new set of civilian awards on the lines of the Padma awards


Industrialist Ratan Tata and distinguished management guru, Dipak Chand Jain, were among the 19 awardees from diverse fields who were bestowed with Assam government’s highest civilian awards at a ceremony held at Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra, Guwahati on January 24.

While Tata was conferred the newly instituted highest civilian award “Assam Baibhav”, five others were conferred with “Assam Saurav”, and 13 others were awarded the “Assam Gaurav” awards.

Assam governor, Jagdish Mukhi presented the awards in the presence of chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.

Unable to attend the ceremony in person, both Tata and Jain sent out a letter to Sarma, thanking the government for the awards. Minutes after attending the event, Sarma tweeted, “It’s a big day today. I hope the recognition inspires others to the cause of building a new Assam (sic).”

Along with a citation and a medal, the awards – Assam Baibhav, Assam Saurav and Assam Gaurav – carry a cash component of Rs 5 lakh, Rs 4 lakh and Rs 3 lakh, respectively.

Personalities who were conferred with the “Assam Saurav” awards include Tokyo Olympic medalist Lovlina Borgohain, educationist Kamalendu Deb Krori, bureaucrat S Lakshmanan, and Neel Pawan Baruah (renowned artist) were given the Assam Saurav awards.

Those who received the “Assam Gaurav” awards were Munindra Nath Ngatey, Basanta Hazarika, Akash Jyoti Gogoi, Manoj Basumatary, Khorsing Terang, and Asif Iqbal, among others.

The first set of awards honoured Covid-19 warriors in the state – Lakshmanan and Ngatey – for playing key roles in executing Covid-19 measures, including mass vaccination. Hazarika was awarded for his role in preparing and executing Covid-19 protocols, managing nearly 3,000 critical patients in Guwahati Medical College Hospital,

Namita Kalita, an auxiliary nurse midwife (ANM) and accredited social health activist (ASHA), Barmita Momin, also received the award. Kalita administered nearly 100,000 Covid-19 vaccine doses. Momin ensured 100 per cent vaccination in a village, who ironically, was earlier forced to pay a fine as a punishment for taking the vaccine.

Agri-entrepreneurs, Manoj Basumatary, Kaushik Baruah and Akash Jyoti Gogoi were conferred with the Assam Gaurav award. While Basumatary is known for setting up an eco-system for piggery in Assam, Baruah started the export of fruits and vegetables produced in the state to Dubai and European markets. Gogoi, on the other hand, established one of Northeast’s biggest egg production units.

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