Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday attended the Sankranti Celebrations organised by Swarna Bharat Trust in Hyderabad on Thursday and conferred 'Muppavarapu National Award for Social Service' on Gutta Muniratnam.
Eminent Agricultural Scientist M S Swaminathan and well-known social worker, Gutta Muniratnam were respectively chosen as the first recipients of 'Muppavarapu Venkaiah Naidu National Award for Excellence' and 'Muppavarapu National Award for Social Service''.
The National Award for Excellence was instituted by the Muppavarapu Foundation, while the one for Social Service was launched by the Swarna Bharat Trust.
Swaminathan was awarded for his distinguished contributions to the field of agriculture while Muniratnam, was awarded for his extraordinary contribution in improving the quality of people's lives through social service.
A plant geneticist by training, Professor Swaminathan's contributions to the agricultural renaissance of India have led to him being widely referred to as the scientific leader of the green revolution movement.
Muniratnam is Founder Secretary of Tirupati -based Rashtriya Seva Samiti and an exemplary social worker who has been working towards transforming rural India by empowering people.
The announcement on the awards was made during the 10th Anniversary Celebrations of Muppavarapu Foundation and Sankranthi Sambaralu (festivities.
Each award carries a cash prize of Rupees Five Lakh and citation.
Addressing the gathering, the Vice President said that respecting and recognising talent and knowledge was inherent to Indian culture. He said awards were meant to inspire others to emulate the awardees.
Referring to the importance of mother tongue in the promotion of culture and traditions, Naidu said that he wanted the medium of instruction up to the primary school to be in the mother tongue.
Naidu said that festivals like Makara Sankranti were occasions to rekindle people's association with nature and its relationship with Indian culture.
The Governor of Telangana, Tamilisai Soundararajan, Governor of Himachal Pradesh, Bandaru Dattatreya, acting Chief Justice of Telangana High Court, Raghavendra Singh Chauhan, Minister of State for Home Affairs Government of India, G Kishan Reddy among others were present during the event.
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