President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday gave away the Santokba Award to Noble laureate Kailash Satyarthi and former ISRO chairman A S Kiran Kumar here. Each of the winners of the award were given Rs 1 crore.
The event was organised by Govind Dholakia of Shree Ram Krishna Diamonds exports firm.
Speaking at the event, President Kovind said, “I broke the protocols and came down to Surat to attend the Santokba award programme when I learnt that the awardees are Kailash Satyarthi and A S Kiran Kumar.”
In his acceptance speech, Satyarthi said, “Surat has given a lot more to the country for its development, but here also child labour activities are going on. I request the Governor of Gujarat and Chief Minister to eradicate child labour from the state with the help of social bodies and NGO and people’s participation. One more issue which has come to the light in the country is sexual abuse of children. We have started Bharat yatra across the country which culminated at the President of India’s office. The President assured us to do something and told us to make the road map for this.”
Chief Minister Rupani responded to Satyarthi’s request and said, “My government will extend all possible help to eradicate child labour activities in the state. The child labour and child welfare department will be given more powers to deal with such incidents strictly.”
Kiran Kumar dedicated the award to the ISRO.