The awardees were selected from among multiple nominees by a 13-member jury comprising stalwarts from various fields.

Meet the 2018 NBF awardees Rukmini Krishnaswamy wins Namma Bengalurean of the Year
news Awards Monday, March 26, 2018 - 16:14

On Sunday, the Namma Bengaluru Foundation (NBF), funded by BJP Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar, held its annual awards function to recognise distinguished citizens of the city.

The ninth edition of the awards, this year’s theme was ‘Reclaiming Bengaluru’ with the focus being on individuals who have in their own capacity contributed significantly to the overall betterment of Bengaluru, NBF said in a statement.

 Rukmini Krishnaswamy was honoured with the coveted Namma Bengalurean of the Year award for her decades of work in helping children with cerebral palsy and related ailments. She is the director of the Spastics Society of Karnataka.

 Rukmini also trains parents and teachers to work with children with special needs. In her lifetime, she has been instrumental in helping over 70,000 children. More than 3,500 children across Karnataka are currently being taken care of by the society. She is also a National Award winner in the field of Rehabilitation Education.

 Vidhya Y, a visually impaired youngster, was recognised as the Rising Star. Not only is she the topper in Master of Science (Digital Society) at the Indian Institute of Information Technology in the city but she is also the brain behind Vision Empower. VE helps visually impaired students like her to pursue science and maths through innovative technology; the initiative is supported by Wipro.

 Vidhya also provides motivational sessions; 75 students have so far benefited from her counselling. She also hosted an online radio show (35 episodes of 1-hour duration each), which was well-received by 5,000 students the world over.

 Suburban rail crusader and urban mobility expert at Praja, a non-profit, Sanjeev Dyamannavar won the Citizen of the Year award. Sanjeev has worked extensively to ensure transparency in the metro projects in the state. He was also one of the first to start a conversation on the need for a Multi-modal Integrated Public Transport System.

 Rasheed Kappan of Deccan Herald emerged as the media person of the year while Deputy Conservator of Forests, Bengaluru, Dipika Bajpai (IFS), was named the Government Official of the Year.

 Kappan is a senior journalist and currently the civic affair editor at DH. He has previously worked at The Hindu and The Times of India.

 Dipika is one of the popular forest officers in the state, well known for her work in initiating mass plantation programs and recovering encroached forest land.

 Prashant SB, Chairman, Nayonika Eye Care Charitable Trust, emerged as the Social Entrepreneur of the Year. The trust is dedicated to the advancement of eye and vision care and provides comprehensive, affordable/free-of-cost treatment to the needy.

 The awards were presented in a glittering ceremony at the NMKRV College Auditorium in Jayanagar by chief guests Justice (Retd) Swatanter Kumar and actor Ganesh.

 All the awardees were selected from among multiple nominees by a 13-member jury comprising stalwarts like former NASA scientist Ashwin Mahesh, poet GS Siddalingaiah and actor-playwright Prakash Belawadi, among others.

Other than the individual awardees, four citizen groups were awarded for their work towards reclaiming Bengaluru. These are Friends of Lakes – a citizen collective which works and assists other civic/RWA groups to restore lakes in a sustained manner; Project Vruksha Foundation, which works in maintaining ecological balance and surveys trees. The other two awards for citizen groups were Save Pattandur Agrahara Lake and Save Kaggadasapura Lake. Both these groups came from spontaneous reactions of concerned citizens about their neighbourhood waterbody crucial for the locality’s sustainability.

NBF is an apolitical platform that works towards many civic issues involving the city. The NGO is also party to many cases in courts involving civic bodies and the state government regarding civic and environmental issues.

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