Social Change Crusaders will be celebrated on Wednesday



From pandemic heroes to vigilante advocates, the nominations for this year’s social change category are truly empowering.

Whether it’s encouraging women to stand up for themselves or reaching out to marginalized sections for education, the nominees for this year’s social change category at the 12th Annual Indian Awards years of CNN-News18 set a high benchmark for excellence

Everyone wants the well-being of society, but only a few stand out as they lead by example with actions that advance well-being through education, access to basic amenities And much more.

From pandemic heroes to vigilante advocates, the nominations for this year’s social change category are truly empowering.

Here’s a quick rundown of this year’s social change nominees:

ASHA workers

Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) workers have helped marginalized communities access the benefits of various government health care programs. They go door to door to educate people about basic nutrition, hygiene practices and health services. They are primarily aimed at ensuring that women undergo prenatal testing and have access to good nutrition during pregnancy. For their remarkable work, the WHO has recognized India’s 10.4,000 ASHA workers as “world leaders in health”.

Hemkunt Foundation

At the height of the second wave of COVID, as cases soared, the Gurugram-based NGO Hemkunt Foundation became a beacon of hope for thousands of people. With the help of volunteers, the Hemkunt Foundation set up facilities with oxygen concentrators, launched drive-thru initiatives and set up a dedicated helpline where people could call for help. They have also worked tirelessly to help flood victims in Assam this year.

Tajamul Islam

Tajamul Islam, a thirteen-year-old Kashmiri teenager, double kickboxing world champion in 2021 and 2016, is now inspiring women in Bandipora, in northern Kashmir, to be passionate about the sport by opening an academy there. She is a living example of how one can overcome all obstacles to achieve their dreams.

Dr Shankare Gowda

Known as the “5 rupee doctor”, Dr Shankare Gowda is a skin specialist from Mandya in Karnataka who charges his patients just 5 rupees. He always prescribes affordable medications and has had a nearly one hundred percent success rate. His selfless service attracts dozens of patients from remote parts of Karnataka.

Raju Kendre

Finally, we have 28-year-old Raju Kendre – a resident of Buldhana in Maharashtra – who is on a mission to make higher education accessible to young people from marginalized sections of society. He opened guidance centers for those graduating from classes X and XII to help them decide on their future course of study. This quickly evolved into Eklavya – a platform founded in 2017, which has helped hundreds of young people in Yavatmal get advice on higher education.

CNN-News18 has set a precedent by honoring agents of recognition of social change in the country through this flagship initiative. Past Public Service Laureates include names like Afroze Shah, Tongam Rina, Dr Devi Shetty, ADR & Lily Thomas, Anna Hazare & team, Ladakh Ecological Development Group & Seeds India, and Pratham, to name a few. .

The CNN-News18 Indian of the Year Awards, presented in partnership with RP-Sanjiv Goekna Group and Reliance Industries Limited, will be announced on Wednesday, October 12 from 6 p.m.

Disclaimer: Network18, the parent company of, is controlled by Independent Media Trust, of which Reliance Industries is the sole beneficiary.

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