Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar/ New Delhi: In a proud moment for Odisha, two boys received the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar from the President of India, Ram Nath Kovind at a special function held at New Delhi today.

Naisargik Lenka and Ayushman Tripathy of Odisha were among the 26 children, 2 individuals and 3 institutions, who were bestowed with the coveted award which is given away under various categories including innovation, social service, scholastic, sports, art & culture and bravery.

Naisargik Lenka was conferred Baal Shakti Puraskar 2018 for his excellence in the field of innovation. He has provided an innovative solution for Remediation of contaminated soil and water using an optimized strain (Anabaena cylindrica) immobilised in polymer matrix, a novel method of treating municipal waste.

Similarly, Ayushman Tripathy bagged the Baal Shakti Puraskar 2018 for his excellence in the field of scholastics. He had earlier won numerous accolades for his scholastic abilities at National and International levels including International Junior Science Olympiad, 2016 held at Bali, Indonesia. He has represented India in Global Youth Leaders Conference 2018 in USA.

It is pertinent to mention here that the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar is now being given under two main categories - Bal Shakti Puraskar and Bal Kalyan Puraskar. The Bal Shakti Puraskar was given to boys and girls for their outstanding work in the fields of innovation, scholastic, sports, arts and culture, social service and bravery.

The Bal Kalyan Puraskar was given to individuals and institutions for their commendable contribution and service in the field of child welfare.

President Kovind presented the awards at Rashtrapati Bhavan in the presence of Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi and other dignitaries.
Other awardees:

In the field of innovation- Mohammad Suhail Chinya Salimpasha, Arunima Sen, Aswath Suryanarayanan Sen, Naisargik Lenka, A U Nachiketh Kumar and Madhav Lavakare.

In the field of social service: Aryamaan Lakhotia, Prathyaksha B R and Eiha Dixit.

In scholastics: Ayushman Tripathy, Megha Bose and Nishant Dhankhar.

In art and culture: Raam M, Dev Dushyant Kumar Joshi, Vinayaka M, Aryaman Agarwal and Truptraj Atul Pandya.

In sports: Shivangi Pathak, Esow, Priyam Tated, Anish and Vijay Deokule.

Kartik Kumar Goyal, Adrika Goyal and Nikhil Dayanand Jituri were given bravery awards.

The youngest awardee was six-year-old Eiha, who has been working for increasing tree-cover in Meerut in Uttar Pradesh.

(With PTI inputs)