Staff Reporter

HYDERABAD: The hall reverberated with the joyful screams and claps of over thousand children from various city-based schools.

The dance of decked-up children to the tunes of Hindi numbers and the witty one-liners of Habib Khader from the Great Indian laughter Challenge fame were equally appreciated with thunderous applause.

Ravindra Bharathi, which hosted the 14th Rajiv Gandhi Vikas Merit Awards-2007 on Friday, was transformed into a noise-box of sorts with the loud chortling of children. The celebrations continued till midday even after the award distribution function was well over.

Union Minister for Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, K. H. Muniyappa, was the Chief Guest. Mr. Muniyappa also highlighted several education related programmes taken up by the Central Government including the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.