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NRI body to honour five Indian Americans

United States America,Diaspora, Sat, 07 Apr 2012 IANS

Washington, April 7 (IANS) Five Indian Americans will be honoured by the Connecticut chapter of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) for their achievements and contributions at an awards banquet April 28.


They are Vivek Maru (social entrepreneur), Faquir Jain (applied science and research), Chandra Prasad (arts and letters), Neena Singh (community service) and Malika Bhandarkar (young person award). William "Vijay" Pinch will be honoured with a Friend of India award at the banquet in Stamford.


"The award selection is a rigorous process conducted by an independent committee which evaluates all nominations and we are glad we select the best possible candidates every year," said GOPIO-CT president Shailesh Naik.


Maru is CEO of Namati, an international organisation that seeks a better understanding of the impacts of legal empowerment and to create the most effective mechanisms for achieving them.


Jain, professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Connecticut, has collaborated to form Biorasis Inc to commercialise a minimally invasive glucose sensor for real time, continuous glucose monitoring.


Prasad, a multi-talented writer whose work has received praise in Booklist and USA Today, created the popular career guide "Outwitting the Job Market" and has written scores of articles on diversity and the workplace.


Singh, co-president of the PTA of the Greens Farms Academy and co-leader of the Girls' Scout Troop, has volunteered in many non-profit activities, including raising funds for project Pingalwara in Amritsar, a home for the underprivileged and mentally challenged.


Bhandarkar, an accountability expert who influences decision makers at all levels to amplify the message "Women Count for Peace", and her team work in post-conflict countries to build responsive accountability systems that monitor and enhance gender equality and women's empowerment.


Pinch is professor of history and chair of the History department at Wesleyan University. His principal areas of research and teaching are South Asian history, religion and history, and maritime world history.


(Arun Kumar can be contacted at


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