SRISTI, for the twelfth year in succession, made an attempt to felicitate institutions and people who have made a significant contribution to the society in preserving natural resources and bio diversity, teachers, innovators coming up with creative solutions to everyday problems, and traditional herbal healers providing their services to those sections of the society where modern health care fails to reach.
The function was organised on 28-29th February at SRISTI premises in Ahmedabad and was attended by innovators, farmers, herbal healers and Honey Bee Network collaborators from different parts of the country and all together eighty people and institutions, engaged in pursuits mentioned above, were honoured. The function was preceded by the SRISTI annual meeting, which was attended by a large gathering of volunteers, scouts, well wishers of the SRISTI and HBN family. The awardees had a chance to share their life and work with the audience on the previous evening.
Among the awardees, we had young Surender from Haryana who could remember tables up to 1100, Baba Bhundu Ram, also from Haryana who has been single handedly spearheading a campaign to plant trees in his area, Arun Kumar Ram from Kolkata who made a human mask to prevent tigers from attacking men in Sundarbans, C.S. Kambali, Karnataka who had dug dozens of wells to recharge the ground water, Ghulam Mohammad Mir, Kashmir who made a singing lantern, Akshyay Pattnaik, Orissa who making a museum of traditional implements, Kamruddin Saifi with his innovative chaff cutter with brakes, Hirabaiben Lobi, a woman entrepreneur, a centenarian, Prof A R Rao who makes learning mathematics pleasurable, and many others.
The awardees were happy to receive the recognition and to know about others who did a similar work. Some of them remarked that perhaps it was the first time when their work was recognized by somebody. It was indeed with the same thought, to acknowledge such unrecognized efforts from the society that SRISTI initiated this samman in 1995 and it was heart warming to see the awardees remotivated and recharged to carry on their respective missions.