KOCHI: President Pranab Mukherjee, during the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2013 just concluded here, conferred the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards to 13 eminent overseas Indians from different walks of life and two overseas Indian societies.
The award is the Government of India’s highest civilian honor for non-resident Indians. Among the awardees were two prominent Indian Americans, Dr. Narendra Kumar, President of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) and Mr. Subash Razdan, a distinguished engineer and a well known community leader from Atlanta.
Dr. Narendra Kumar received the award for his achievements in the field of medicine, community service, global leadership and contributions to building bridges between India and the United States. Mr. Subash Razdan got the recognition in the area of outstanding public service.
The other award winners include Rajkeswur Purryag from Mauritius, Australia India Society of Victoria from Australia, Prof. Dr. Gursharan Singh Chhatwal from Germany, Ashok Shambhomal Vaswani from Guinea, Indian Doctors Forum from Kuwait, Tan Sri Ravindran Menon from Malaysia, Dr. Rasik Vihari Joshi from Mexico, Dr. Satendra Kumar Singh from New Zealand, Gilbert Canabady Moutien from Reunion Island, Mohammed Rabeeh Karuvanthodi from Saudi Arabia, Ismail Ebrahim from South Africa, Bava Pandalingal from UAE and Patricia Maria Rozario from UK.
Recognition for 100,000 physicians
“I am humbled and honored by this great honor bestowed on me today,” Dr. Narendra Kumar said, soon after receiving the award. He called it as “the recognition of the achievements and contributions of 100,000 physicians of Indian origin in the United States, whom I represent as its sitting president.”
It’s been a steady growth to prominence for Dr. Narendra Kumar, who took charge of AAPI in June 2012, during its 30th annual Convention in Long Beach, CA. Soon after assuming office, Dr. Narendra Kumar told his fellow physicians: “We will put all our energy in a positive direction in order to restore AAPI’s image, improve financial health, and bring unity, integrity and stability to our organization.”
Within six months, Dr. Kumar and his extraordinarily committed team have worked hard to fulfill those prophetic words. AAPI today is more united than ever, financially stable, expanding steadily and is on the right path strengthening the organization and its 100,000 members, seeking ways to contribute to their motherland.
His leadership qualities and organizational skills came to the forefront and have been hailed by one and all during the Nine-City Musical Tour in the United States as well as during the most recent Global Healthcare Summit 2013 in Kochi, India.
With over 1,200 delegates from around the world, the Summit was historic for the number of delegates and the quality of discussions led by world renowned physicians, CEO’s, and scholars from around the globe, in addition to the many initiatives planned to benefit millions of people in our motherland.
For many, leading such an organization is an honor. However, Dr. Kumar sees this as a responsibility, and says, “I have tried my best to carry on this responsibility with ever greater commitment and dedication.”
Serving in various capacities in his local Michigan chapter and subsequently the parent AAPI, Dr. Kumar has an intimate knowledge of the “nuts and bolts” of this giant organization.
A man of integrity and giving his best to every effort that he has undertaken both in his professional, family and social life, Dr. Kumar has won the admiration of everyone. In the words of Dr. Jayesh Shah, President-Elect, AAPI, “Dr. Kumar is kind of person that you immediately feel like he is your friend. To describe Dr. Kumar in 3 words: He is personable, go getter and passionate. He can translate any dream into reality by hard work, perseverance, and commitment.”
An accomplished physician and surgeon in the United States, specializing in Otolaryngology- Head & Neck Surgery, Dr. Kumar is a Board Certified Sleep Medicine specialist and founder/Medical Director of Sound a Sleep, Sleep Diagnostic Labs which includes 4 Sleep Labs in the state of Michigan.
Dr. Kumar, who had completed his medical degree from Trivandrum Medical College, Kerala and post-graduate residency from Banaras Hindu University (Varanasi, India) and Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, is committed to giving back to the community and to the enhancing of opportunities for the professional growth of physicians of Indian origin.
On his commitment to social causes in addition to his professional leadership, Dr. Kumar, who is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, candidly admits, “Over the past 10 years, I have become increasingly involved in social, professional and political arenas and have taken active leadership roles in various Medical Organizations.”
Dr. Kumar is married to Meenakshi for 32 years and the couple are blessed with two children, Sarada and Ramesh.
Distinguished engineer and community leader
Subash Razdan was born in Ahmedabad, Gujarat in a family, which hails from Kashmir, India. He is a distinguished engineer and a well known community leader based in Atlanta.
Subash graduated from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), New Delhi with a Bachelor of Technology Degree in Civil Engineering. He received his MBA degree at the Georgia State University, Atlanta, Georgia in 1976. He has also served as a Lecturer at the School of Business at the Georgia State University.
Subash has a long list of accomplishments in his social, civic and professional fields and we are only highlighting some of his most noteworthy contributions.
At IIT Delhi as early as 1972 as a student leader, he served as the General Secretary
In 1987, Subash was elected as the President of the India American Cultural Association, (IACA), Atlanta where he served as Chairman of the Board in 1990. During this period his contributions led to the recognition of the Association as a premier social entity with a National recognition. As the President, he was responsible for the redesigning and refurbishing of the Gandhi Room at the Freedom Hall of the King Center.
In 1990, he served as the chairperson of Economic and Employment Commission of the Cobb County Community Relations Council in Georgia.
In 1992, Subash as the Vice President of the National Federation of Indian American Association (NFIA) served as the Convener for 7th Biennial Convention of NFIA in Atlanta, Georgia. This was a major undertaking.
From 1991 to 1998, Subash’s efforts and leadership resulted in the installation and dedication of the Statue of Mahatma Gandhi at the National Historic Site, Atlanta, Georgia. It is the first of its kind on U.S. Federal property. At the time of dedication, Subash was the President of NFIA and was the Cofounder of the Gandhi Foundation of USA.
He has also served later as the Chairman of Trustees of NFIA. In 1997, Subash Razdan was one of the key coordinators of the 50th Independence Day Anniversary celebrations in Washington DC by India and Indian Americans in the USA which had First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton as its Chief Guest.
In 1996, Subash was appointed an Attaché’ for the Government of India for the Olympics held in Atlanta that year. He also served as the acting Chef de Mission for Indian contingent of 100 athletes and officials.
In 2000, Subash was appointed by the Governor, Roy Barnes of Georgia as a member of the Census 2000 Count Committee.
In 2000, Subash accompanied President William Jefferson Clinton on President’s historic visit during March 19-25 to India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. He has been a frequent invitee to the White House festivities.
Razdan, who made the list of 500 most influential Asian Americans of the prestigious New York Magazine Avenue, is serving as an advisor to the Coca Cola Company’s Procurement Advisory Council for Minority and Women-Owned Supplier Development Programs.
Currently he is serving as the acting Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Gandhi Foundation of USA.
Subash has been a guest speaker at various meetings, forums and conventions held in U.S., India and other locations. Most notable of this are: Keynote speaker at Kodikanal International School’s Convocation and the Centennial celebrations in August 2001; Keynote speaker at Women’s Federation for World Peace in Atlanta, Georgia; Plenary speaker at Global Conventions of Non-Resident Indians in Paris, France (1992); and in New Delhi, India (1993); AT&T Diversity Day; Atlanta Urban League; etc. He has contributed articles for various newspapers including the prestigious Atlanta Constitution.
He is a recipient of many prestigious awards. To highlight a few, Citation from the Secretary of State of Georgia, the Hind Rattan award in India in 1991, the Gandhi Foundation of USA award in 1998, All-round Outstanding contribution at IIT Delhi 1973 and also Key to the Aravali Hostel at IIT Delhi 1974.
Subash also owns Asia Pacific Broadcasting Network (APBN). He is the producer of highly popular weekly television show, Namaste Bombay.
Mr. Subash Razdan, a Kashmiri Pandit, graduated from Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi and moved to USA. He is a distinguished engineer and a well known community leader. He was the past president of Indian American cultural Association (IACA), founder and president of Gandhi Foundation USA, Atlanta Asian American Association, National Federation of Indian Associations, Kashmiri Association and a producer of popular “Namaste Bombay” TV show in Atlanta for several decades. His special contribution to Asian and Indian senior citizens are noteworthy.
India Post News Service