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TCN annual awards 2010 winners announced

By TCN News,

The wait is over. TwoCircles.net is pleased to announce the winners of its maiden annual TCN Person of the Year 2010 Award and TCN Organization of the Year 2010 Award. The award goes to eminent RTI activist Afroz Alam Sahil in the first category and Bihar Anjuman, a network of Muslims from Bihar, in the second category.

The awards will be given away to the winners at a function to be held on 4th December at India Islamic Cultural Centre in New Delhi starting at 10am.

The awards were announced in mid-June this year and readers were asked to nominate people and organizations for the two categories. We got overwhelming response from our respected readers from across the globe. Selected nominations were put to vote and TCN readers participated overwhelmingly in this voting. Some nominated organizations ran campaign to get maximum votes from their supporters. As the voting was going on, TCN staff spread across different cities of the country deliberated on the choices.

Taking readers vote and other factors into account, the TCN family concluded that Afroz Alam Sahil deserves TCN Person of the Year 2010 Award for his immense service to the community and society at large. Bihar Anjuman, an international network of Bihari Muslims, active in the field of education for the Muslim community of Bihar and Jharkhand, was selected for the TCN Organization of the Year 2010 Award.

Afroz Alam Sahil is a journalism graduate from Jamia Millia Islamia and has been involved in RTI activism since the revolutionary RTI Act came into existence in 2005. He has so far filed thousands of RTI petitions seeking crucial information related to development of the society, issues relevant to the minority community and human and civil rights. Answers to many of his RTI questions have been important news stories of the days and he has become a house-hold name and a hope for Muslim youth who otherwise feel that the administration is not responsive to them.

Bihar Anjuman started as a mailing list in 1999 but has come a long way since then. It has over 8000 members in its group spanning the globe. Using modern communication tools, it has provided a valuable link back to the poor Muslims living in Bihar and Jharkhand to the diaspora living outside the state and country. The mailing list has become a platform to identify needs and find resources & solutions.

The group has since established a network of coaching centres in the two states for poor Muslim students. These innovative coaching centers are an attempt to minimize the drop-out rate while also improving the quality of education for the students. Without the platform of Bihar Anjuman and its global-spanning mailing list, much of the Bihari Muslim diaspora would not have been able to directly get involved in their home states.

We are happy to start our annual award with these recipients as both have demonstrated courage, determination and innovativeness in using existing tools and technologies to benefit their community.

The New Delhi award ceremony will also feature a symposium on “The Community and Alternative Media: The TwoCircles.net experiment”. Eminent personalities from various walks of life are attending the program and some of them will be invited to speak on the subject.

Bihar Anjuman: http://www.biharanjuman.org/