Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award for CB Patel

When one works selflessly, without any expectation of reward, the fruits are much sweeter. Although the message of Bhagawat Geeta is very clear that one has right over his work but not over its result, a few individuals can follow it in letter and spirit. But those who do, end up getting much more success in the end.

This certainly refers to the prestigious Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award 2023 conferred upon the Editor in Chief of Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar – CB Patel. His dedication to the publication of these two weeklies for over 50 years has been well recognised by the community and British people alike in the UK. He is well known and highly respected in India as well in the relevant circle. This accolade has been a long in waiting and well deserved for him. I am sure that many people who have known CB will be extremely happy and encouraged by this announcement.

The hard work and enthusiasm of CB have been a motivation for many youngsters. Not only in his work but also in social activities, CB has been a prominent figure. His leadership quality is great and admirable. His team-building approach is evident from the success these two weeklies have achieved. ABPL teams in India and UK are working tirelessly to bring out better and better publications every week. Balanced views and wide coverage of these two weeklies are plus points that can be attributed to CB’s leadership. The government of India has recognised his contribution to the Media as a testimony of
quality and impartiality.

With this award, I am sure the whole team of ABPL Group will be encouraged to work harder, contribute to the social cause and spread correct and accurate information in society. I believe that although the Award is given to CB Patel, it is a reward for the dedication of the ABPL team as a whole.
Wish you all the best.

Kindness: the buzzword

Kindness was the buzzword during Covid-19. People have shown unprecedented empathy and generosity towards each other. The Hobbesian view that the natural condition of mankind is a state of war in which life is “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” because individuals are in a “war of all against all”, was proven wrong.  Mankind’s softer side emerged formidable.  During the time of, let’s say ‘common suffering’, people united, largely followed the rules and cared for each other. We realised that kindness to others is kindness to ourselves.

The situation has proven that there are no boundaries when it comes to health and well-being. Political and geographical separations cannot divide humanity when there is an existential crisis. Our fight for survival is common and shared. Therefore, the ancient Indian concept of ‘Vasudhaiv Kutumbkam’ was proven powerful and universal. Ultimately, people acknowledged and accepted that ‘common good’ is the ultimate good for mankind. It is expected that although COVID is not completely gone, we have learnt to live with it. The virus seems to be milder and humanity much stronger. Our collective will to survive, fight and handhold each other has won. The two powerful weapons for this victory were kindness and empathy.

Incidents of self-sacrifice and selfless service filled thousands of pages of newspapers, and streamed for millions of hours on social media videos, giving inspiration and hope to everyone. It was shown that those who suffered were not alone, but their pains were shared by others. The willingness to part with own wealth and comfort, to be helpful to others, was evident from the amount of donations made during the Covid period. At that moment, everyone realised nothing was permanent, everything was transitory. It provided a much-needed lesson of spirituality and value system to the society which had become too materialistic. The lost concern for human welfare was restored and once again kindness won over selfishness. Let’s hope this will continue forever.