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Kudos to Coimbatore!

Narain Karthikeyan

Narain Karthikeyan

The Jaguar and Ritz Excellence Awards in Coimbatore reiterated the fact that there is much about tier-two cities that go unheard and unsung, in the face of the juggernaut of media coverage accorded to the big ones. But there are some wise enough to acknowledge that there is a world beyond the glitzy metros, where there are real people leading real lives. People who have not just made a difference to their own lives, but also to the towns and cities they come from.

Recognising this, Aruna R. Krishnan, Editor and Publisher of  Ritz — described as South India’s premier uber lifestyle magazine — launched the magazine in the city at a small and elegant awards ceremony at Le Meridien. Aruna’s aim is to make Ritz a magazine that covers all of South India. She has just launched in Telengana and now her sights are trained on Kerala. “I picked Coimbatore because I know that the kind of things happening here is missing in bigger cities. When I spoke to our award winners, they came across as erudite and at the same time so grounded and real,” she said.

 G.V. Prakash, N. Chandran, Shankar Vanavarayar, Vanitha Mohan, Narain Karthikeyan, B. Soundarajan, Jayachandran Anand, Anusha Ravi, Rajshree Pathy and Vikku Vinayakaram, who received the awards, have a distinguished track record straddling the world of music, conservation, industry, education and motorsports.

Vanitha Mohan has become synonymous with the city’s environmental concerns, be it greening, water conservation or waste management. She and her team of environmentalists have successfully involved thousands of men, women and children in the upkeep of the city. Remember how thousands of Coimbatoreans turned up to clean up the Big Tank? Besides being an industrialist to reckon with, Rajshree Pathy has brought art exhibitions to town and given people a chance to meet renowned contemporary artists and view their work. Textile technocrat N. Chandran put Tirupur on the map of global textiles and, in a moving acceptance speech, dedicated his award to the ‘small industrial town’ that made him. Shankar Vanavarayar and Anusha Ravi are constantly trying ways and means of keeping the spirit of inquiry and learning alive through their educational institutions. Everyone in Coimbatore is immensely proud of Narain Karthikeyan, the Formula One driver. He dedicated his award to the entire motor sport community. “Being recognised in your home town is always special and it was great to be part of the event. To share the accolades with my family, friends and close acquaintances is a rare opportunity for me.” Narain said that Coimbatore has been the home for motorsport in India for a long time, and with the right support and investment, it has strong potential to build on its historic past. Jayachandran Anand, the managing director of Jayem Automotives, also received due recognition. His company has been serving the automobile field and has contributed to the indigenous research and development of the engineering products for 60 years.

G.V. Prakash, the music director, was also one of the award winners. The youngster, who has completed a decade in Tamil cinema, has now forayed into the acting field. He received an award for pioneering new directions in the field of cinema and music.

Vikku Vinayakaram got a standing ovation when he finished a short performance with a flourish of his ghatam. Youngsters in the hall were so thrilled that they flocked around him for autographs and selfies after the show.

Beautiful models in elegant ethnic wear and ornaments sashayed down the ramp for the fashion show, featuring jewellery brand, Studio Tara and clothes lines such as Vrissa and Anavila that retail out of Amethyst. Page 3, the city-based salon, was the styling partner for the event. The evening came to a close with the award winners interacting with the crowd over a sumptuous dinner at Le Meridien.


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Printable version | Sep 29, 2022 11:03:19 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/the-jaguar-and-ritz-excellence-awards-honours-ten-coimbatoreans/article7522410.ece