On 4th March, 2012, the heaving pioneer hall at Castle Hill with 400 people   had a magnificent evening in many ways .This was the evening when 41 high achievers of Indian origin in the fields of academics, sport, media, community services, art and culture, language, drama, film and music were recognized by GOPIO Sydney. Before the impressive   audience of distinguished guests, proud parents and encouraging community members, the talented bunch of individuals were applauded for their hard work, grit, determination and talent .The organization for making this very special evening possible was GOPIO Sydney who is a trendsetter of these awards night since 2010.

The students and guests were welcomed with traditional Teeka Ceremony at the door. The people were fascinated by the bagpiper playing the pipe to welcome them in his own inimitable style. The evening began with the traditional lamp lighting followed by the welcome note of Lucky Singh, president GOPIO Sydney. She said,” I am both, proud and humbled to stand before you all tonight, confident in the knowledge that we are building something remarkable together. We greatly value this extremely special occasion where we acknowledge, encourage & most importantly promote the positive achievements of our young achievers of Indian origin. These awards provide a great opportunity and give important recognition to our leaders of tomorrow.”She congratulated all the high achievers and their proud parents and wished them all a great future ahead.

Umesh Chandra, International coordinator of GOPIO oceania/pacific region addressed the audience and read the message of GOPIO International president Mr Ashook Ramsaran from Newyork. He congratulated the president for her team efforts. GOPIO International chairman Mr Inder Singh’s message was read by Rohit Revo.

The chief guest for the evening Harjeet Singh Sethi, vice consul at Sydney applauded and praised the efforts of high achievers. Other guests for the evening were Matt Kean MP for Hornsby, representing Premier of NSW, Nathan Rees, former premier NSW representing   leader of the opposition NSW, Mr. Umesh Chandra, coordinator of GOPIO International in Oceania/ Pacific region, Mr Nihal Gupta, Chairman NSW Multicultural business advisory panel, Anupam Sharma, Producer/Director and advisor of Indian Cinema, many MPs and councilors of Labor and Liberal parties.

The evening was led by Radio jockey of Sursangam- Nitin Madan and two charming ladies Manju Mittal and Shaizy Singh. Gautam Koul from Canberra added spice to the evening by asking witty questions to the high achievers. The caliber of all the high achievers was outstanding. The students bagged trophies, and gifts by our sponsors The Good Guys-Nash Patel  and the Astrolab. The two All Rounder awards went to Proteek Roy Chowdhry and Divyansh Saxena and both of them received Tablets sponsored by Value world and Poonam’s – The Fun House.

The other awards were- Pallavi Sinha for community services, Sonia Sadiq for Art& Culture, Rajpal Sandhu for Literature, Sonu Sarda for education, Lady of the Media- Kumud Merani, Woman of the year- Mala Mehta for promoting Hindi language, Friends of India- Michelle Rowland MP, who sponsored all the awards for the third consecutive year and Life time Achievement Award went to Bawa Jagdev Singh OAM for his community services.

Harpreet Singh from Punjab Times and Anuj Kulshreshtha from Hindi Gaurav were also acknowledged for their ongoing support and official media partners of GYAAN awards.

The award ceremony was followed by a short   entertainment program that was mostly presented by the high achievers. The Shakespearean dance by Shefali Chaukra, the locking and popping Bollywood dance by Gautam Koul, the mesmerizing song of Gulnav Hora, the best Bhangra group of Sydney by Karan Multani and Palaks dance enthralled the audience. While on the other hand Niharika and Gargi captivated the audience with their spellbound traditional form of dances.

Maya da Dhaba, also the platinum sponsor of the night had laid out a sumptuous dinner, followed by an auction; return air ticket to India sponsored by the Silver sponsor Best & Less Travel and a poster signed by Sachin Tendulkar sponsored by Swamy Army.

 Sukhwinder Rajput, the joint secretary of GOPIO Sydney closed the evening by acknowledging and thanking everyone.

Bravo GOPIO Sydney team! of Dr Thomas, Bhupinder Chhibber, Rajat Midha, Sukhwinder Rajput, Manmohan Singh, Suresh Sharma, Balbir Singh, Satpal Dhingra, Harpreet Singh, KL Dhingra, Himmat Singh, Poonam Chhibber, Kuldeep Kaur, Rosina Sharma, Shivdev Kler, Dr.Lubna Thomas and last but not the least GOPIO Sydney’s president Lucky Singh who all worked persistently for this event. All in all,  a noteworthy evening.

GOPIO Sydney encourages students of Indian origin to apply for GYAAN awards after their HSC exams in December each year at their website www.gopiosydney.com.au

-by GOPIO Sydney correspondent              

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