Meet some of the winners of Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2021
The Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar was awarded to 32 children on Republic Day 2021 in recognition of their outstanding talent and hard work. Seven awards were given in the field of art and culture, 9 for innovation, the sports category saw 7 awardees, 5 awards were given out for scholastic achievements, 3 children were felicitated for bravery and 1 child was honoured for social service.
“A golden future is evident in the children awarded with Bal Puraskar. I am glad that these children who have been awarded have understood the value of courage, dedication, co-operation, discipline and perseverance,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said.
Here are some of this year’s winners from eastern India:
The 16-year-old from Midnapore is an author of historical fiction and mythology and an art and culture columnist. He was awarded the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2021 for excellence in art and culture.
De aims to revive and reinvigorate Indian heritage and culture by rewriting Indian mythology and history in a way that is appealing to today’s generation. He is the youngest Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland and has been regularly writing columns for notable publications.
The teenage artist from Kamrup, Assam, paints with not just colour pencils, oil and water colours, but with charcoal and acrylic as well. At 16, his artworks have been exhibited at renowned art galleries all over the world. He has 10 international and 35 national awards in his kitty. He was awarded for his excellence in art and culture.
Another budding painter who was awarded for excellence in art and culture, Venish Keisham has already won several competitions, including the International Online Art Contest 2020 organised by Akm Kala Sangh, Pathankot, Punjab, India. She bagged second place in an international level Online Cartooning Competition organised by Art Affina in collaboration with Khalsa College of Education, Amritsar, and Renaissance Award in International Online Drawing Competition organised by Creative Canvas, 2020.
Jyoti Kumari, a 16-year-old girl from Darbhanga, Bihar, is the recipient of the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2021 for bravery. Kumari might seem like any other girl of her age, but the courage and strength she displayed during the pandemic by covering 1,200km on a bicycle cannot be described in words. During the COVID-19 lockdown, she cycled from Sikandarpur in Haryana to Darbhanga in Bihar to reach home and help her ailing father.
The 15-year-old serial innovator from Sikkim received the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2021 for excellence in the field of innovation. Ranjan has developed many award-winning softwares at the national level, including DigiSmart Bin, a garbage-billing platform that bills on how much you throw; Auto LPG Refilling, in which along with a device made by him, one can place the LPG cylinder order before it is exhausted and thus save delivery time; and MushroomArc, under which he has made a Mushroom Artificial Intelligence (AI) Classifier that classifies edible and poisonous mushrooms.
ANVESH SHUBHAM PRADHAN
A 14-year-old student from Khordha, Odisha, was awarded the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2021 for excellence in the field of Scholastics. Pradhan has been performing exceptionally ever since he was 6 and has been awarded more than 200 certificates, prizes and scholarships by various reputable international, national and state-level organisations such as Australian Mathematics Competition, UNSW Global Australia, ANCQ, SASMO, ISFO, SEAMO, HBCSE, SOF, The Odisha State Government, DAV Olympiad, JMO, Indian Institute for Studies in Mathematics (IISM), Silver Zone, Institute for Promotion of Mathematics (IPM). He has also won several international and national awards.
The 10-year-old chess whiz from Tripura bagged the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2021 for excellence in sports. The national chess champion is also the first girl from north-eastern India to receive an international gold medal and the youngest international rated player of the state with an ELO rating of 1053 in 2017. In 2019, Das won a gold medal in the Asian School Chess Championship at Uzbekistan and a gold medal in the National School Chess Championship at Raipur in the Under-9 category. She is a two-time bronze medal winner in the National Chess Championship in 2017 and 2019. She has also been awarded Best Player of the Year in chess for four consecutive years by Tripura Sports Journalist Club from 2017 to 2020. During the lockdown, she played around 500 online tournaments organised by the International Chess Federation (FIDE), All India Chess Federation and many more club tournaments.
The 16-year-old archer from Ranchi, Jharkhand, also won the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2021 for sports. Hailing from a humble background, Kumari has excelled in archery at every level and is a constant source of inspiration for girls. In 2018, Kumari won a gold medal in the 3rd South Asian Archery Championship, Dhaka, one bronze medal in the 65th School Games Federation of India in 2020, and one silver medal in the 13th Jharkhand State Archery Championship in 2019.