The British Council of the U.K. organised the Study UK Alumni Awards 2023 in Kolkata, India, to congratulate the individuals who have put in their best efforts in multiple roles, such as innovators, business professionals, entrepreneurs, community leaders, etc. The event at the Grand Oberoi also recognised the roles of individuals who worked towards strengthening ties between the UK and India.
The British Council of the U.K.
The British Council, founded in 1934, is an organisation specialised in providing opportunities relevant to international culture and education to students. The council is presently located in 100 countries, promulgating the richness and diversity of the U.K. and the effectiveness of the English language globally. The organisation runs on its three key values- Open and Committed, Expert and Inclusive, and Optimistic and Bold.
The primary value of “open and committed” that the British Council opines about is concerned with deep and long-term commitments to people and the place where it works. The other value says “expert and inclusive,” which means including everyone in the discussion and taking everyone’s opinion to later incorporate it with the expertise of the people in the organisation. The third key value claims the council to be “optimistic and bold.” By doing so, the British organisation believes that the optimistic energy upheld by youth could prove to be an asset in bettering the world. It emphasises making bold choices to provide the world with something different, diverse, and not monotonous.
By touting these three values, the council has impacted the lives of lakhs of individuals internationally.
Inside the Award Show
The prestigious international event was hosted in the presence of various reputed government luminaries and leaders from the education and sports industries. It also marked the ninth anniversary of the Alumni Awards.
The winners were difficult to choose from as the list of applicants featured 1200 names of U.K. alumni from approximately 100 countries. To ease the process, the applicants were selected only across four categories: Science and Sustainability Award, Culture and Creativity Award, Social Action Award, and Business and Innovation Award.
The Science and Sustainability Award was won by Abhinav Sinha, a senior scientist at the National Institute of Malaria Research and an alumnus of the University of Glasgow. The award was presented to him for successfully displaying the impact and scale of his distinguished work in the field of science. Abhinav was praised for his work towards eliminating malaria in India. Currently, he is serving as the leader of a national project working for it.
The next award in line was for Culture and Creativity. The winner was decided based on an applicant’s career in arts and culture and their ability to make their passion tangible through artistic ingenuity, influence, and creativity. The category was won by Puja Changoiwala. She has a journalism degree from the University of Westminster and is presently working as an established author and activist for the most vulnerable sections of society.
The Social Action Award winner was Sugandha Yadav, a Supreme Court advocate and an alumnus of Durham University. Ms. Yadav was presented with the award for bringing transformation through her contribution to improving the lives of a multitude of people. She has worked on over 300 cases spanning environmental, constitutional, and human rights law. An expression of her commendable work can be found in some of the major cases in the Court, such as the decriminalisation of homosexuality or the Pegasus case.
The winner of the last category, Business and Innovation, was Saumya Singh Rathore, a postgraduate in Psychology from the University of Manchester. She was given a reward for her company, WinZo. It is India’s largest interactive entertainment company. The category recognises the alumni who are active and working to bring forth new ideas and innovations to keep creativity alive.
Ms. Rittika Chanda Parruck, Director of Education India, said that the council is delighted to recognise the accomplishments of deserving graduates from the U.K. university and boost them to further do good. She further quoted, “We are proud of them and wish to celebrate their success while fostering fruitful future partnerships with them.”
Organisations like the British Council from U.K. have changed the landscape of conventional ways of cooperation. It has shown how beneficial partnerships can be generated by building harmony between communities and providing them with a fair playing field. Such organisations are hailed worldwide for their futuristic and optimal approach.