Winners of the Asian Achievers Awards in 2016

  • Achievement in Media, Arts and Culture

    The Singh Twins, Contemporary Painters London-born twin sisters Dr Amrit Singh MBE and Dr Rabindra Singh MBE are contemporary British artists of international standing. Their award winning paintings have been acknowledged as constituting a unique genre in British Art and for initiating a new movement in the revival of the Indian miniature tradition within modern art practice. Describing their work as Past - Modern (as opposed to Post Modern), their work challenges existing stereotypes and redefines the generally accepted, narrow perceptions of heritage and identity in art and society. Combining elements from Western and Eastern aesthetics they assert the value of traditional and non-European art forms to the continuing development of Contemporary Art practice. They explore cultural, social and political issues of global significance within a highly decorative, often witty and symbolic style. They have exhibited in some of Britain's most prestigious art venues. Their work has also toured to Museums and Galleries around the world. The Singh Twins' recent projects include a portrait of Maharaja Duleep Singh and a collaboration with Indian Fashion Designer, Tarun Tahiliani, who's 2015 Spring Summer Collection is inspired by their artwork.

  • Achievement in Community Service

    Zlakha Ahmed, Founder & CEO - Apna Haq set up the Apna Haq organisation, a Black and ethnic minority women's domestic violence support organisation 22 years ago. Due to the support provided by Apna Haq, hundreds of women and their children have been able to leave abusive family environments and lead violence-free lives, going on to realise their full potential. Zlakha is involved in local, regional, national and international areas to further the cause of eradicating violence against women. Examples of these are, influencing the National Children's Commission on child gangs and grooming and child sexual abuse enquiries. Apna Haq is a member of the national working group that developed the National domestic violence standards for the National Institute of Clinical Excellence. Apna Haq is also a member of the shurah council of WISE and The Women's Islamic Initiative in Spirituality and Equality. This is a global programme, a social network and grassroots social justice movement led by Muslim women.

  • Sport Personality of the year

    Ryan Raghoo, Paralympian is a British record holder for the T36 Long Jump, ranked top 10 in the world for his classification. He is the first person in British history to qualify for the Paralympics in the men's Long Jump. The first time he ever jumped he won a Gold Medal at the World Games representing team England in August 2015. In December 2015 he started working with a Long Jump coach, 3 months later they made sporting history qualifying for the Paralympics in February 2016. His parents were told he would never walk or talk. He has spent long periods of time in wheelchairs and hospitals with an uncertain future. 20 years ago when he was born, mistakes made by the medical team that delivered him resulted in brain damage and a condition called Cerebral Palsy. He has represented Great Britain at Junior and Senior level, now he is targeting London 2017 and Tokyo 2020.

  • Professional of the year

    Jo Sidhu QC, Barrister & President of the Society of Asian Lawyers is widely regarded as a 'superlative' leading Counsel in serious criminal cases with extensive experience in terrorism, homicide and large scale conspiracies involving fraud, drug trafficking and high-value robberies. Jo has been involved with numerous high profile cases, including three of the largest ever terrorist plots (ricin poison, gas limos/dirty bomb and the airline liquid explosives); £40m Graff diamonds robbery; Goldman Sachs secretary (theft of £4m); £50m cocaine 'bling bling' gang; and £100m VAT diversion fraud. Ranked as a leading criminal QC in the UK by Legal 500 in 2015 and described as having “a keen eye for detail and a vast knowledge of the law”, and in previous years called “brilliant” and “superlative”.

  • Woman of the year

    Manjit K Gill, CEO & Founder - Binti a single parent of 2 for nearly 15 years Manjit managed to amass nearly 20 years of business and has been involved in 7 startups prior to Binti. Binti seeks to empower women by eliminating the social and cultural stigma surrounding menstruation. Her flair for finding opportunities has taken her around the world and she has international experience in the business arena. Her role as a mentor for a business woman in Kenya with the Cherie Blair Foundation led her to start this project. Her mission is to create a huge social impact whilst generating a sustainable organisation. Providing basic menstrual hygiene solutions and reproductive education for girls and women across the world has become her obsession. She has been nominated for several awards for her work with Binti. She has also been profiled in many notable publications, including The Independent, The Metro and The Times of India.

  • Entrepreneur of the year

    Selva Pankaj, CEO - Regent Group , is the CEO of Regent Group. The Group was founded as a family business in early 2000 and Selva was involved with the Group as a Non-Executive Director. Simultaneously he held a career as a finance and investment professional working in the investment banking and fund management sector. In 2009, Selva was appointed as CEO of Regent Group. Regent Education Group manages Regent College, Regent College Higher Education, Regent Skills Training, Burlington College, Albany College, Regent Learning Centres, Regent Nursery School, the Selvanayagam Foundation, STP Property Holdings and Chesterfield Partners. Regent Recruitment Group is a new venture operating in the recruitment sector, primarily focusing on sourcing staff for roles across the education sector. Regent Alliances Group specialises in collaborative partnerships in the UK, EU, US and Asia, forming recruitment links with reputable institutions based in the UK and abroad.

  • Business Person of the year

    Dr Nikesh Kotecha, CEO - Morningside Pharmaceuticals as a young man, Dr Nikesh Kotecha's dream was to make quality healthcare affordable and accessible throughout the world. He established Morningside Pharmaceuticals Ltd from his garage in Welwyn Garden City with his wife Moni in 1991. Today it supplies an extensive range of MHRA licensed generic medicines to NHS Trusts, wholesalers and pharmacies. Nik is an ambassador of UKTI Catalyst; a governmental body which advises businesses on developing international trade. He is also involved in many working groups across the East Midlands, such as the Life Sciences committee within the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP). He is also the Chair of the International Trade Steering Group for the East Midlands Chamber of Commerce, which develops policies and strategies to promote exports from the region. Nik is a board member of the British Generics Manufacturers' Association (BGMA), an organization of CEOs from all the main manufacturers of generic pharmaceutical, who provide a voice for the industry. He is a key member of a group of 5 for the Leicester University Philanthropy Board, to help raise £10m for the new Medical School in Leicester. Nik is also actively involved in many charities, community projects and sponsorship.

  • Uniformed and Civil Service

    PC Karmjit Rekhi MBE, Faith Officer - Metropolitan Police , is a Faith Officer for the Metropolitan Police Service where she has been the lynchpin of a highly diverse local community. PC Rekhi has worked over the last eight years to improve relations between the Met and communities from different religions across the borough of Hounslow. Karmi, as she is known, has helped people from those communities feel more comfortable approaching police, in many cases breaking down lingering suspicions. Her efforts were recognised when she was made an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours. PC Rekhi joined the Met in 1991 and was said to be the second Asian police officer on the force at the time. She served in Sutton and Hounslow before taking up her current role as faith liaison officer for the borough in 2008. She holds regular surgeries at places of worship across Hounslow, where people can approach her for help or advice.

  • Lifetime Achievement Award

    The Lord Patel KT FMedSci FRSE (born 11 May 1938) is a British obstetrician, a cross bench peer cross and the Chancellor of the University of Dundee. Lord Patel became a Member of the Royal College Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in 1969, and a Fellow in 1988. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1999. He served as chairman of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges of Scotland 1994–95 and of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges of the UK 1996–98. He was President of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists from 1995 to 1998, having been Honorary Secretary from 1987 to 1992 and Vice-President 1992–95. Lord Patel received a knighthood in the 199 and was made a life peer on 1 March 1999 as Baron Patel, of Dunkeld in Perth and Kinross.

  • Editor's Award for Young Entrepreneur of the Year

    Vivek Chadha At a very young age, Vivek, 28, has excelled in the field of Hotel's, Hospitality and Real Estate. Over the past three year's he has led the family business to a Group which now owns Assets worth £150m, with a turnover of £40m/p.a and employs over 700 people. Vivek owns and operates 14 hotels in the UK with brands like Novotel, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Ibis Hotels etc. An Alumni of UCL and a Civil Engineer, he has been hands on with all the projects that the Group has undertaken to date. The Flagship of the Group is the 300 Bed Novotel in Heathrow and multiple hotels around the M25. He also has acquired various distressed investment portfolios and currently through various acquisitions has over 120 tenants. Vivek is also a Trustee of the Gandhi Statue Foundation for which he donated £100,000 last year.

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