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Godfrey Phillips `bravery awards' to be extended

Our Bureau

Kolkata , Nov. 19

GODFREY Phillips India Ltd, sponsor of the annual `Red & White Bravery Awards', has now decided to "broadbase and institutionalise" the awards concept.

Having already extended the span to as many as 14 States, the company now plans to cover the entire country in a systematic manner.

Talking to Business Line, Mr Sundeep Kumar, Sr. Vice-President, Corporate Affairs, Godfrey Phillips, said: "We intend to generate massive public interest in the bravery awards by using it as a means for catalysing a change in society's perception of what true bravery constitutes." Mr Kumar was here to seek the participation of the people of West Bengal in sending nominations for the two categories of awards - Physical bravery and Acts of Social Courage. He clarified that having carefully nurtured the awards since 1990, "it was now time to effectively showcase the profiles of these brave men and women, who, ideally should emerge as the new role models for our impressionable young citizens."

"We have already set in motion the process to take the event to a national plane, and accordingly the scope of the two awards plus the one being given for `lifetime achievement,' was being widened," he pointed out.

Mr Kumar said the Godfrey Phillips team was now engaged in the creation of a dedicated Web site for the bravery awards. The last date for entries from Bengal is November 30, and the awards would be presented on December 18.

Judged by a panel comprising personalities from fields like Administrative Services, Police and retired Judges of Supreme Court and High Courts, social workers and media celebrities, the selection process involves thorough checking of cited events, persons and places, in order to ensure that only the deserving ones are given the awards. He said since authenticity was vital, all entries have to be attested by a gazetted officer, or a police officer not lower than the rank of an Inspector.

The company has also invited nominations for the `Lifetime Achievement Award for Social Service,' instituted in 1997, to recognise "those who have selflessly spent their lives working for the betterment of society." This award carries a citation and a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh.

The eligibility criteria require that the nominee be an Indian national (not from the uniformed services) and be above the age of 21. Gold (Rs 20,000), silver (Rs 15,000) and Bronze (Rs 10,000) medals are awarded. For the 12th round of awards, at all the 14 State chapters, the physical act of bravery needs to have taken place during the period July 1, 2003 to June 30, 2004.

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