Union Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi presented the Thrissur Jilla Souhrida Vedi awards for 2009 at a function here on Sunday.
The Mohammed Abdul Rahman Sahib Best Media Personality Award for N. Ram, Editor-in-Chief of TheHindu and group publications, was received on his behalf by a representative of TheHindu. The award is instituted in memory of freedom fighter and journalist Mohammed Abdul Rahman Sahib.
C. Achutha Menon Award for Exemplary Social Work for Revolutionary Socialist Party leader and former Kerala Labour/Public Works Minister K. Pankajakshan was received on his behalf by Kerala Water Resource Minister N.K. Premachandran.
The awards in the other categories were received by Congress leader Aryadan Mohammed (K. M. Seethi Sahib Memorial Human Fraternity Award); social worker K. V. Rabiya (Joseph Mundassery Award for Outstanding Social Work); writer P. Radhakrishnan (T.V. Kochubava Literary Award); actor Sukumari (Bahadur Memorial Best Actor Award); film director Blessy (Ramu Karyat Award); and Gulf-based social worker V. Shihabudeen (Special Vedi Award for Community Activist).
Addressing the meeting, Mr. Ravi said the activities of organisations such as the Souhrida Vedi were a reflection of how Keralites lived in the Gulf without communal divides.
“The problems faced by NRIs in the Gulf had prompted the Ministry for Overseas Indian Affairs to set up the Indian Community Welfare Fund (ICWF). Later, it was extended to 42 countries. The fund is at the disposal of the Indian missions in all the Emigration Clearance Required (ECR) countries to meet contingency expenses for the welfare of workers in distress,” he said.
Among those present on the occasion were Kerala Revenue Minister K.P. Rajendran; Indian Union Muslim League leader Abdusamad Samadani and Thrissur Mayor R. Bindu.
The Thrissur Jilla Souhrida Vedi is a forum of Qatar-based natives of Thrissur.