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Bangalore heralds "Inspiring" Indians


Bangalore heralds
BANGALORE: Despite having several broken bones, when 24-year-old Dhanya Ravi took the microphone, her bright smile, indomitable spirit and grit won the hearts of the exclusive audience at the Annual Inspired Indian Foundation (IIF) Awards -2014 held at Raj Bhavan recently.  

Born with a rare genetic disorder commonly called the Brittle Bone disease (Osteogenesis Imperfecta or OI), multi-faceted Dhanya Ravi, founder of Amritavarshini Charitable Society, that offers monthly financial/ medical assistance to needy OI patients, said: “People with this disease have extremely fragile bones, that they can break easily at any point of time, even as I speak. A slight bump can lead to a severe fracture. Many people with this disease are short, have twisted limbs and are unfortunately bound to their wheelchairs or beds. Despite the problems that I have faced, I have strived to be happy. I have learnt that one has to develop optimism, in order to be successful in life. My motto of ‘never give up’!”. 

Another award recipient was Bhaskar, a traffic constable posted on Suranjan Das Road in city. Bhaskar's  dedication and commitment towards policing has made him a hero in the locality, with the residents seeing a role model in him. "This is my first recognition in my life and my mother always told me to do my job happily. I wanted to dedicate this honor to all Bangaloreans," Bhaskar said, during his acceptance speech. He attended the event along with his family and friends.

Speaking on the occasion, Karnataka Governor Dr H R Bhardwaj said that Dhanya Ravi's story is a reminder for everyone to overcome the limitations and push for excellence. "It is important that we constantly identify such inspiring people and celebrate their success.” The governor conferred the Inspired Indian Foundation Lifetime Award on senior aerospace scientist Dr Kota Harinarayana, popularly known as the 'Father of the Light Combat Aircraft – Tejas'. Speaking on the occasion, Dr Harinarayana said: “Failures are the stepping stones of success. One must be relentless and tireless in pursuit of the goal and look at negativity as morale boosters.” 

Other inspiring Indians honoured on the occasion are: T J Thomas, chairman, Gina Group for protecting the interest of Divine School for Visually-Impaired; Manoj Pillai, MD, Thinkpot Productions for filming Google's #PledgeToVote campaign during the just-concluded general elections; Ustad Faiyaz Khan, sarangi player for supporting music despite personal tragedy and ill health, Malathi K Holla, paraplegic Olympic athlete for taking up the cause of special children, M Srinivasan, chairman, GEAR Foundation for innovation in education; P S Subramanyam, director, Aeronautical Development Agency for proactive leadership in aerospace and R K Tyagi, chairman, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd for launching a series of HR-centric initiatives.

On the occasion, 20 new members were enrolled as volunteers into the Inspired Indian Foundation, with Arnav Pai, a 11th standard student, being the youngest. The Award is a salute to those individuals who have made a mark – armed with single-minded devotion, passion and grit.