- 1st time in India, an award to recognize efforts of Legislators
- Chief Minister of state, Hon’ble Devendra Fadnavis felicitated with Reader’s Choice Award
- Also present Former Lok Sabha Speaker and India’s Home Minister event – Shivraj Patil
- Actor Comedian Prashant Damle interviewed legislators with added humour
- Pankaja Munde held a panel discussion with lady legislators
Mumbai, August 4, 2016: Lokmat, Maharashtra’s number 1 newspaper, on the occasion of India’s 70th year of Independence presented India’s First Award for Legislators – ‘Vidhi Mandal Puraskar’, to recognize the efforts and noteworthy contribution of Legislators of Maharashtra at Yashwantrao Chavan Pratishthan in Mumbai.
Shri Devendra Fadnavis, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Maharashtra was Chief Guest of the Event. Other dignitaries present were Former India’s Home Minister Shivraj Patil, Chairman of Legislative Council Ramraje Naik Nimbalkar, Speaker of Legislative Assembly Haribhau Bagde and Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Hansraj Ahir who graced the occasion.
The accolades were given across 4 categories to the best and the most deserving legislators of Maharashtra. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis was conferred with Readers’ Choice Award.
Vidhi Mandal Puraskar winners-
- Jeevangaurav Puraskar (Member of State Legislative Assembly) – Shivajirao Deshmukh,
(Member of Legislative Council) – Ganpatrao Deshmukh
- Outstanding young Legislator award (Member of State Legislative Assembly) – Rahul Narvekar, (Member of Legislative Council) – Atul Bhatkhalkar
- Outstanding Woman Legislator award (Member of State Legislative Assembly) – Neelam Gorhe, (Member of Legislative Council) -Varsha Gaikwad.
- Outstanding Studious Orator (Member of State Legislative Assembly) Dhanjay Munde,
(Member of Legislative Council) – Prakash Ambitkar
Talking at the award ceremony and Lokmat’s initiative, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said, “I congratulate and thank Lokmat Group and RR Patil Foundation for organizing this excellent program. I am glad that they have taken an initiative to recognize the efforts of elected representatives who have done great work. I was invited to present the award, but I am deeply honored to also receive the Reader’s Choice award from Lokmat. I believe each award increases our responsibility and accountability toward the society. If the work of legislators is recognized like the way Lokmat has did, it will definitely contribute to raise the quality of the state assembly.”
Apart from the award ceremony, the function was a feast of political ‘Jugalbandi’ where the politicians discussed the areas of concern related to parliament and legislative assembly.
Former Legislator Ulhas Pawar conducted a discussion on ‘State Legislature for making laws or creating ruckus?’ Former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, Chairman of State Legislative Council Ramraje Naik Nimbalkar, Speaker of State Legislative Assembly Haribhau Bagde, Former Speaker of State Legislative Assembly Dilpi Walse Patil and Senior Legislator Ganpatrao Deskmukh participated in this discussion.
Talking about the initiative on the awards, Rishi Darda, Editorial and Joint MD at Lokmat Media said, “It gives us immense pleasure to congratulate all winners of the ‘Vidhi Mandal Puraskar’. I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to our Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Former Union Minister Shivraj Patil to grace this occasion with their presence. I would also like to thank all the jury members who have made it possible for us to recognize the efforts taken by our Legislators. Through these discussions forums, we aim to enhance the importance of democracy by encouraging leaders and promoting contribution & efforts of the legislators.”
On behalf of R.R.Patil Foundation Mr Vinod Patil said, “We are happy to be a part of this unique initiative and sincerely thank Lokmat for encouraging people in politics to do much better work in future. This association will elevate the platform of the foundation and is fitting tribute to our founder.”
Noted Actor Prashant Damle conducted discussion on ‘What actually happens in State Legislature?’ Parliamentary Affairs Minister Girish Bapat, Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam, Former Home Minister Jayant Patil, MLA Dilip Sopal and Former Chief Minister Narayan participated in the discussion.
Highlighting the contribution of women legislators in State Legislature, Women & Child Welfare Minister Pankaja Munde conducted a discussion. BJP MLA Manda Mhatre, Shiv Sena MLC Neelam Gorhe, NCP MLC Vidya Chavan and Congress MLA Yashomati Thakur participated in this discussion.
Lokmat Media Pvt. Ltd. is a leading multi-platform media company with interests in a diversified portfolio of publishing, broadcast, digital, entertainment, community and sports verticals. ‘Lokmat’ is the largest read regional language newspaper in India with 23.5 million readers (Source: Total Readership, IRS ’12 Q4) and Maharashtra’s No. 1 daily with 11 editions and a circulation of 1.4 million copies (Source: Audit Bureau of Circulation, July – Dec ’14). ‘Lokmat Samachar’, with 3 editions is one of the largest read Hindi daily in the state of Maharashtra with over 1.3 million readers (Source: Total Readership, IRS ’12 Q4). ‘Lokmat Times’ has 3 editions.