CNN-IBN has announced the nominees for the final three categories of the CNN-IBN Indian of the Year Award. And among the nominees is an interesting mix of personalities from the Entertainment, Public Service and NRI categories.
The prominent personalities from the entertainment category include Shah Rukh Khan – for continuing to deliver hits and being one of the most versatile showmen of today; Raj Kumar Hirani – for creating ‘Munnabhai’, the most loved film character of 2006 and prompting a lingua revolution; Himesh Reshammiya – for rewriting the rules of success in playback singing; Gajendra Singh – for being the man who created TV revolution in terms of contests shows and reality TV; Aamir Khan – for being an actor, an activist and much more; and Priyanka Chopra – for being one of the hottest sensations in the Indian film industry.
Those short-listed under the Public Service discipline include Arvind Kejriwal – for making the Right to Information a true movement; Kishore Tiwari – for putting the issue of farmers’ suicide on the national radar; S Manjunath – in whose death, the nation woke up to the menace of petrol adulteration; Jean Dreze – for his contribution to the Right to Food Campaign and in the field of basic education; Dr Abhay and Rani Dang – for using innovative ways to improve the health of the poor in Maharashtra and help in reducing infant mortality rates by over 75 per cent; Sabrina Lall, C L Mattoo and Neelam Katara – for displaying unprecedented courage in taking on powerful authorities and making us believe in the power of the middle class voice.
The aspirants in the NRI category include Indira Nooyi – for becoming the worldwide chief of PepsiCo; Laxmi Mittal – for making the world begin to acknowledge and respect Indian businessmen; Kiran Desai – her Booker in 2006 reaffirmed that Indian writing had arrived on the global stage; Shashi Tharoor – the Indian who dared to contest the UN Secretary General’s position; Deepa Mehta – for being the voice of Indian film-making in the international community; and Sunita Williams – for becoming the second woman of Indian origin to be part of NASA’s space odyssey.
Rajdeep Sardesai, Editor-in-Chief, CNN-IBN and IBN 7, said, “With this, we have declared the nominees for all six categories of the CNN-IBN Indian of the Year. Having set the ball rolling, it will now be up to the Electoral College and the public to decide who are the most deserving of the Indian of the Year title for each of these groups. Regardless of the winner, each of these 36 candidates should be lauded for their efforts and achievements in their respective disciplines.”