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KG Foundation honours six with `Personality of the Decade' award

Special Correspondent

Entrepreneurs should dream big and act big: Air Deccan managing director

— Photo: K. Ananthan

ROLL OF HONOUR: The Chairman of KG Foundation, G. Bakthavathsalam (fifth from left) with the recipients of `Personality of the Decade' Award presented at a function in Coimbatore on Friday. From left are the Managing Director of Air Deccan, Capt. G.R. Gopinath; violin maestro L. Subramaniam; the CMD of Canara Bank, M.B.N. Rao; the CMD of ONGC, Subir Raha; the Editor-in-Chief of The Hindu , N. Ram; the Managing Director of State Bank of India, T.S. Bhattacharya. The director KG Information Systems, Ashok Bakthavathsalam, is at extreme right.

Coimbatore: Six eminent persons were conferred "personality of the decade" award by the KG Foundation here on Friday for leaving an indelible mark in their chosen field.

According to G. Bakthavatsalam, foundation chairman, "the extraordinary personality is one who has risen above the ordinary people by making a significant contribution to the nation." He should be dynamic and lead the flock. He should be able to overcome the barriers and hurdles to achieve "magnificent success".

Those honoured were: Subir Raha, Chairman and Managing Director of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited; L. Subramaniam, violin maestro; T.S. Bhattacharya, Managing Director, State Bank of India; M.B.N. Rao, Chairman and Managing Director, Canara Bank; N. Ram, Editor-in-Chief, The Hindu, and G.R. Gopinath, Managing Director, Air Deccan.

Captain Gopinath, a pioneer in low-cost airline in the country, called for a "change in the mindset" of the entrepreneurs. They should "dream big and act big". He explained how Air Deccan grew from one aircraft touching only one airport 24 months ago into an airline having 24 aircraft covering 39 destinations with 150 flights. He underlined the need for "idea and commitment".

Dr. Subramaniam spoke of the role of "direction and guidance" provided by parents and teachers in one's career and progress.

Recipe for success

Mr. Bhattacharya said "risk-taking" was essential to achieve success. "Think and act differently" and "write your own rule book", he advised.

"I have tried to do things differently," he said pointing out that his tenure in Tripura and Jakarta was beneficial to the people of the region and also to the bank.

He was happy to note the success in retail banking which he had been promoting.

Mr. Rao said "recognition is to human nature what yeast is to bread". Maintaining that he was not a "solitary bird", he attributed his success to "several other birds" including parents, wife and children and the customers.

Role of the media

Mr. Ram, who gave an overview of the media and the challenges it is facing, made a fervent appeal to uphold "core values". The media should provide credible information. It also had a critical function.

It should maintain a `decent degree of independence." Propagandist journalism would not sustain. Besides, the media had an educational function, which had a "tremendous potential". It also had an "agenda building role".

He admitted that there was " a lot of pressure" on core values and also "a lot of confusion" regarding the same. "You have got to hold your audience without compromising on core values," he added.

Mr. Subir Raha explained the importance of handling difficult situations in a humane fashion. Be they big or small, be helpful to your colleagues, he said.

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