I / London December 1, 2009, 10:21 IST
Leading NRI entrepreneur Maneck Dalal, who has played a major role in promoting Indian art and culture in the UK, has been awarded the Asian Leadership Award for his contribution towards heritage.
Dalal, who has been Chairman of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan UK for the last 36 years, was presented the award last night by British lawmaker Keith Vaz here.
Receiving the award Dalal asked the people of Indian origin to "remember the culture of your motherland while pledging total loyalty to this country". He said: "The culture you have inherited at your country of birth is very good in this mad world of today.
Indian culture is the bedrock of sanity." Surinder Mongia, a leading NRI entrepreneur specialising in consultancy and design services for aviation projects with offices in Canada, UK, Finland and India, won the Asian of the Year Award 2009. Vijay Goel, partner at Singhania & Co, one of the largest Indian law firms here, received the Asian Leadership in Europe award for his "significant role in promoting Indo-European business relations". Dalal was educated at Cambridge University and called to the bar in London in 1945. At 29, he started Air India in the UK in 1948 and became the airline's first Regional Director. In 1973 he became the Indian Government's Adviser for Tourism and Civil Aviation. In 1997, Dalal was conferred the Order of the British Empire by The Queen. Other recipients of the awards included Alpesh B Patel, who was awarded the Asian Leadership in Indo-UK Business Relations, and Indya Aujla, who received the Asian Leadership in Harmony award among others. Patel is the founder of Praefinium, an international asset management company and has been appointed by the UK government as a 'Dealmaker' responsible for India. Ravi Gidar, who bought his first pharmacy at the age of 23, and is now managing director of Gold Care Homes, was awarded the Asian leadershship in Community Health care award. Nina Amin, a chartered accountant and Tax Partner with KPMG, one of the "Big four" professional services firms in the world, was awarded the Asian leadership in Diversity for her contribution to share valuations for tax purposes.