P. Sainath, Rural Affairs Editor of The Hindu, has been selected for this year’s Bharat Asmita national award set up by the Maharashtra Institute of Technology (MIT) group of institutions here.

He will receive the Bharat Asmita Jana Jagaran Shreshta award for public awakening on February 3.

In a press note, the MIT said his writings initiated important changes in drought alleviation programmes in various States including Tamil Nadu, Orissa and Madhya Pradesh. “Almost single-handedly he focussed the nation’s attention on the farmers’ suicide problem. He is one of the most recognised international journalists having received a number of awards and honours for his unflinching and dedicated reportage.”

Mr. Sainath is the co-recipient of the award along with film director and theatre personality Jabbar Patel, who has made the landmark films in Marathi, Saamna, Sinhasan, Umbartha, and Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar.

The Bharat Asmita Jeevan Gaurav Puraskar has gone to Infosys founder and chief mentor Narayana Murthy and to his wife, Sudha Murthy. She is the chairperson of the Infosys Foundation, a philanthropic organisation working in social service areas.

Award for research in science, technology

The Bharat Asmita Tantra-Vigyaan Shreshta award for research in science and technology will be given to Ashok Jhunjhunwala, professor in electrical engineering, Indian Institute of Technology-Madras. His research includes telecommunications and wireless systems and developing technologies for rural areas. He is a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Prime Minister.

Ajit Rangnekar, Dean of the Indian School of Business in Hyderabad, has been selected for the Bharat Asmita Acharya Shreshta award for the best teacher in management.

The Bharat Asmita Jana Pratinidhi Shreshta award for the best young exponent of parliamentary practices will be given to Haryana MP Deepender Singh Hooda for working towards rural development through education and power generation.

This is the sixth year of the awards. About 5,000 nominations have been invited from across the country. The selection committee is headed by scientist Padma Vibhushan Raghunath Mashelkar. Educationalist Vishwanath Karad is the executive chairman.

The MIT is run by the Maharashtra Academy of Engineering and Educational Research.

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