"The advisory committee which met on July 12 under the chairmanship of former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court A M Ahmadi, decided that the 10th Rajiv Gandhi Sadbhavana Award be given to Setalvad and Mander, for their outstanding contribution towards communal harmony and national integration," Rameshwar Thakur, member secretary of the committee, said.
He said the award, which carries a citation and a cash prize of Rs 250,000 would be presented to them on August 20, the birthday of Rajiv Gandhi, by the chairman of the award committee, former Chief Justice A M Ahmadi.
Former prime minister P V Narasimha Rao, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, senior Congress leaders Manmohan Singh and K Natwar Singh, former adviser to the prime minister H Y Sharda Prasad and Thakur were part of the advisory committee, which selected Setalvad and Mander for the award, Thakur said.
The award, instituted to commemorate the lasting contribution made by late prime minister Rajiv Gandhi to promote peace and harmony, is given every year on his birthday to an institution or person promoting the noble cause, he said.
Winner of numerous journalistic and international awards, Teesta Setalvad is a woman journalist from Mumbai and the editor of Communalism Combat, who played a vital role in exposing the anti-Muslim bias of the Mumbai police force during the January 1993 communal riots.
Besides authoring several books on women, Hinduism and human rights, she is also involved in several initiatives to promote India-Pakistan dialogue in addition to making a contribution in the field of human rights.
Former Indian Administrative Service officer Harsh Mander was recently in the spotlight for an article detailing the Gujarat communal carnage.
In the 20 years of his administrative service, Mander played a crucial role in quelling the anti-Sikh riots of 1984 in Indore, in addition to serving in various capacities, including as the managing director of the Schedule Caste/Tribe Finance Corporation.
Other recipients of the National Sadbhavna Award include the late Mother Teresa, Ustad Bismillah Khan, Lata Mangeshkar, Sunil Dutt, Jagan Nath Kaul, Dilip Kumar and Kapila Vatsyayan.
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