Special awards to industrialist Kumar Mangalam Birla, Indian Actor Varun Dhawan and Indian Director Riteish Deshmukh
Mumbai… April 2023… Always committed to encouraging and celebrating the outstanding work of individuals, Lokmat Media Group once again hosted one of the most prestigious and respected awards in the state of Maharashtra, ‘Lokmat Maharashtrian of the Year Awards (LMOTY) 2023’ in Mumbai.
Lokmat honored people who excel in politics, administration, social service, arts, sports, and entertainment and celebrated their accomplishments. The Award celebrated and saluted the voice and recognizes the phenomenal work of the nominees who have changed the landscape of the state with their efforts and hard work.
The event witnessed the presence of prominent personalities like Jyotiraditya Scindia, Union Minister of Civil Aviation & Steel, Govt. of India, and Raj Thackeray, Founder & Chairperson, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) as a guest of honors. Other special invitees at the event were Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman, Aditya Birla Group; Varun Dhavan, Indian Actor; Riteish Deshmukh, Indian Actor, Director; Jayant Patil, Former Finance Minister, Maharashtra; Amruta Fadnavis, Banker, Singer, Social Worker; Nana Patole, President, Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee; Dr. Amol Kolhe, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha; Praful Patel, Member of Rajya Sabha and Lifestyle coach and motivational speaker Swami Gaur Gopal Das.
Rishi Darda, Joint Managing & Editorial Director, Lokmat Media Group said, “LMOTY is a platform to felicitate and salute some outstanding personalities for their phenomenal work over the years. Lokmat is a promising media group that will continue its work of encouraging people in various fields. Our three-level rigorous process of analyzing the work and selecting the winner is what makes this award so renowned. We have honored distinguished persons who are change-makers in Maharashtra with this prestigious award. And I believe our efforts will keep motivating people to do good work in their respective fields and we will keep felicitating such individuals.”
Union Minister of Civil Aviation & Steel, Govt. of India, Jyotiraditya Scindia congratulated the Lokmat Media Group and Darda Family for hosting the event and all the attendees for attending the event and said, “This award event is an iconic and historic event which gets all Maharatrian together under one roof. I have a very strong relationship with this state. Though my constituency is Madhya Pradesh my motherland is Maharashtra and will always remain. Today, we see Maharashtra’s prominence in various sectors like industrial, educational, and cooperative sectors. But this land has a great history. Maharashtra has always been recognized for its culture and sacrifice. This land has seen many great people like Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and Jyotirao Phule. I always believe the revolution and transformation in India started in Maharashtra. The great India that Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj had dreamed of has come true under the leadership of our Prime Minister. Today Maharashtra has become a very independent and strong stage and contributes 15% of the total GDP of India. So, Maharashtra is a foundation on which the tower of India’s economic growth potentializes.”
Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman, of Aditya Birla Group showed his gratitude toward his employees’ hard work for getting the award and shared views on the growth of India and the Aditya Birla Group. He said “The country will see a growth of 6.7% every year which is an achievement for a large economy like ours. It helped us become one of the world’s largest and most prosperous economies. Our Aditya Birla Group is seeing good growth and we are expecting 20% of the revenue to come from our modern, consumer-facing businesses. We are syncing with the global trend and focusing more on consumer-facing business which always gets more valued. The legacy of growth will be continued by my children and they will drive the empire. Though my daughter pursued a career in singing and my son made his name in sports but now they have joined me. I always supported them in their decision of following their passion which made them more disciplined, more adaptable, and learned to get along with the situation.”
While speaking about joining the Vodafone Idea board again, he said, “I see potential in the company and market which made me join the board again. Now the government has to have 3 players from the private sector in the industry given the strategic importance in the telecom sector which will help the sector grow.”
Indian Actor and Director, Riteish Deshmukh expressed his views on Marathi Cinema and said, “My movie ‘Ved’ gave me the title of Director and I am happy that the audience has shown their love for the movie. Marathi Cinema has always faced a lot of competition from Bollywood, Dubbed Hollywood, and South Indian cinema. Also, we don’t get enough screens in comparison to other cinemas. But I really liked that now people are taking more interest in Marathi cinema too. I would like to thank Darda Family and Lokmat Group for giving platform, space and recognition to Marathi cinema.”
While receiving the LMOTY award, Bollywood Actor Varun Dhawan said, “Maharashtra is my motherland where I started my work too, and getting award title of Maharashtrian of the Year award means a lot to me. These days we see many awards functions but this award is very special as it felicitates the work done by Maharashtra people. I am thankful to Lokmat Group for giving me such a prestigious award.”
Founder and Chairperson, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), Raj Thackeray was interviewed by Amruta Fadnavis and Dr. Amol Kolhe, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha at Lokmat Maharashtrian of the Year 2023 by Lokmat Media Group. While expressing his views in a humorous as well as witty manner during his engrossing interview, he said, “I always wanted to get into filmmaking but I pursued my career as a cartoonist and later as a politician. Now being a politician, I have to do a lot for the betterment of people. I am a proud Maharashtrian; Marathi will always be my topic of discussion and agenda of the party. I always believe parties must keep their word and fulfil their promises. As an opposition, I will criticize the wrong practice of the ruling parties but will praise the right work too.”
The questions ranged from his personal life to his political career as well as his choice of favourite politician between Sharad Pawar and Narendra Modi; his preferred Chief Minister between Devendra Fadnavis and Eknath Shinde. During the rapid-fire round, he was also asked to give one-word advice to Uddhav and Aditya Thackeray.
The nominees get selected by a rigorous process of editorial meetings, public voting and then by a panel of eminent jury. The jury for the selection of this year’s Lokmat Maharashtrian of the Year Award winners comprised renowned personalities such as Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Dr. Vijay Darda (Chairman, Lokmat Media Group), Balasaheb Thorat (Former minister of Revenue,Agriculture), Dr. Raghunath Mashelkar (World renowned scientist), Sanjiv Mehta (Chairman & MD – HUL), Schauna Chauhan (CEO – Parle Agro), Satya Raghavan (Country head – Youtube India), Kailash Kher, Dr. Sonal Parmar (Principal, Cathedral and John Connon School) ,Dr. Sanjay Oak ( Chairman, Covid Task Force), Rishi Darda (JMD & Editorial Director – Lokmat Media Group).
The evening became more insightful with the special interview of Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman, Aditya Birla Group with Rishi Darda, JMD & Editorial Director, Lokmat Media Group) and of Raj Thackeray, Founder and Chairperson, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) with Amruta Fadnavis, Banker, Siger, Social worker; and Dr. Amol Kolhe, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha.
The Special LMOTY Award for Visionary Industrialist went to Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman, Aditya Birla Group. The Special LMOTY Award Indian Actor and Indian Director were bestowed upon Varun Dhawan and Riteish Deshmukh respectively.