Activist Durga Mallu Gudilu wins 28th Jankidevi Bajaj Puraskar 2021

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Activist Durga Mallu Gudilu (second from right) won the Jankidevi Bajaj Puraskar 2021

Bajaj Electricals Ltd. awarded together with IMC Ladies’ Wing 28th IMC Ladies’ Wing Jankidevi Bajaj Puraskar 2021 to Social Activist Durga Mallu Gudilu – Trustee, Anum Foundation.
Chief Guest Shekhar Bajaj, Chairman and CEO of Bajaj Electricals Ltd. commended Durga for her contribution to improving her community and people during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Who is Durga Mallu Gudilu?

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the nationwide lockdown brought life to a standstill and affected the livelihoods of the Vaidu community, who mainly worked as day labourers, domestic workers, street vendors and manual scavengers.
Durga took direct responsibility as she raised funds to provide rations, distribute medicines and other essential supplies to 10,000 families. She ran a vaccination campaign and awareness program. She secured technological access to education by founding Mera Sapna, an open study circle that benefited around 450 children. She also helped distribute lunch meals to 20,000 children and provided sanitary pads to over 15,000 vulnerable girls.
Durga works enthusiastically for the development of the Vaidu community in the fields of education, health, nutrition, environment, employment and women’s empowerment through her NGO – Anum Foundation and the Maharashtra Vaidu Vikas Samiti.
Nishreen Khorakiwala, President of the IMC Ladies’ Wing, said on this occasion: “Educators – Empowered Women, Empower Women” is the motto of the IMC Ladies’ Wing for the year. And our winner for this year – Durga is a trailblazer in every sense of the word. She has transformed the lives of hundreds of people in her community, especially helping them with their livelihoods during the trials and tribulations of the pandemic. She truly combines grace, strength, intelligence and fearlessness to bring forth her fellowship of shadows to take her rightful place and live a life of self-respect and dignity.”

The 28th Jankidevi Bajaj Puraskar is an initiative that recognizes, encourages, supports and honors women entrepreneurs who work to improve the living conditions of rural India. The prize is named after Smt. Jankidevi Bajaj for all her pioneering work in rural development.

The event also witnessed the publication of “Meri Jeevan Yatra” – the fourth edition of an autobiography by Smt. Jankidevi Bajaj. The book offers a glimpse into the transformation of a wealthy and privileged 27-year-old Marwari-Bahu into a social worker and activist who gave up all her wealth and owned only her weather-beaten khadi bag and a few meager belongings.

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