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Young Indians win Time Magazine's essay competition

December 07, 2010 12:21 IST

Three young Indians sweep the Time Magazine's first Asian essay competition on the challenges that the continent face in the 21st century in Singapore.

Dehradun-born Sarabjit Singh came first in the continent-level essay competition, while the joint runners-up were Gemlyn George from Tamil Nadu, New Delhi's Rohit Pathak and Su Hsing Loh of Singapore.

The awards were announced and presented at a ceremony here today.

The 'Asia's Challenge 2020' essay competition was organised jointly by the Hong Kong-based Asia Business Council (ABC), Time Magazine and Singapore's Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.

Singh, a permanent Singapore resident, wrote about the challenges of economic inequality in Asia and the need for inclusive development, citing the wealth and poverty in India.

An abridged version of Singh's essay is published in the Time magazine under Thank you for sharing - Huge inequalities in wealth distribution must be addressed if Asia is to continue to develop.

The 26-year old Singh runs Paper Terminal, which has 100,000 clients across 200 countries using its software to computerise business operations.

"This award means a lot to me. It is a perfect reward for my efforts," said Singh, who is also a freelance writer on global affairs.

George, 26, a graduate from the Christian Medical College in Vellore in Tamil Nadu, wrote about deficiencies in Asia's healthcare system, while his compatriot Rohit Pathak, 20, a graduate from New Delhi's Sanskriti School, focused on governance in Asia.

Loh, a 31-year old Singaporean Phd student at the Fudan University in Shanghai, wrote an essay on Asia's decoupling from the West.

The main purpose of the essay competition was to generate fresh ideas for tackling key challenges to Asia's continued competitiveness and development, as well as encourage young professionals to make an impact on public policy and business in Asia, said ABC's executive director Mark Clifford.

About 400 essays by Asian nationals under the age of 32 were submitted for the competition on questions: "What is the most important challenge facing Asia over the next decade? Why? What should be done about it?"

Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Trade and Industry and Ministry of Education acknowledged the intellectual input by young Asians from 21 countries at the Singapore award ceremony today.

He welcomed the suggestions that a book be compiled on all the essay entries, stressing that it should be an important read for all policy makers in the region.

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