Toronto, April 29 (CINEWS): Last Friday, the CIF Awards Gala (Canada India Foundation) was held at the International Centre. Over 500 movers and shakers were there to fete the man behind the fourth largest media group in the world, media moghul and philanthropist Dr. Subhash Chandra, Chairman of Essel Group and Zee Media. He received the CIF’s Chanchlani Global Indian Award.
Those in attendance included Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, the Chief Guest, The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development in the federal government as Guest of Honour and His Excellency Vishnu Prakash, the High Commissioner of India in Canada as Distinguished Guest and a host of other well-known political, business and community leaders.
Federal Minister of Science, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, former Minister in the Harper Government Jason Kenney, MP’s The Honourable Deepak Obhrai, Ruby Sahota, Rob Oliphant and Gagan Sikand, and from Ontario, Associate Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, the Honourable Dipika Damerla, MPPS Amrit Mangat, Indira Naidoo-Harris and the Honourable Harinder Takhar as well as the Mayor of Brampton, Linda Jeffrey. Ontario’s Opposition Leader Patrick also joined the event.
The highlight of the evening was the presentation of the CIF Chanchlani Global Indian Award to Dr. Subhash Chandra. It was a poignant moment when Dr. Jaya Chanchlani and her daughter Dr. Tina Chanchlani handed the Award trophy to Dr. Chandra, and evoked memories of the late Vasu Chanchlani, whose initial endowment enabled the Award to become a reality. Dr. Chandra became the 6th recipient of the Award, after Sam Pitroda, Tulsi Tanti, Ratan Tata, Deepak Chopra and Narayana Murthy.
The Award carried with it a cash contribution of $ 50,000, made up of contributions from CIF Members and corporates. The amount, as in previous instances, was donated to a charity of the Award recipient’s choice, in this case, Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of Canada, which provides educational solutions for remote villages in India through a unique one-teacher concept. For the first time, the receiving organization was also present at the event, enabling the donors to connect directly with the beneficiary.
Making his acceptance speech, Dr. Chandra combined personal anecdotes about starting up with his current business vision and immediate plans and in a lighter vein, indicated to Minister Bains that he would be happy to move the international operations of Zee TV to Canada, if offered appropriate tax incentives.
At a press conference earlier, Dr. Chandra evinced strong interest in getting a business venture off the ground, given the large and growing number of South Asian diaspora.