Stalin D
Stalin D

Dr Sarita Bambale, Kalyan resident working in Covid Care Centre at Mulund

Endorsed by: Mihir Kotecha, MLA, Mulund

Dr Sarita Bambale
Mihir Kotecha

Special achievements: “Dr Sarita Bambale served the patients despite being pregnant. She discharged duties for 10 to 12 hours at times at the Covid care centre to help those in need. Dr Sarita tended to patients from her second to eight months of pregnancy, giving an inspiration to several others. All this was done with a smile on her face, which helped patients overcome their fears after contracting the deadly virus. Dr Sarita loves her profession and has risen to the occasion when the country is fighting the pandemic, and needs doctors at the forefront. For her remarkable achievement, she was also felicitated by Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Governor of Maharashtra.”

Nitin Nagothkar, a worker at Shivaji Park Crematorium

Endorsed by: Kiran Dighavkar, Assistant Municipal Commissioner of G (North) ward

Nitin Nagothkar
Kiran Dighavkar

Special achievements: “Managing the mourners, disposing bodies and exhausting themselves physically, the workers at Shivaji Park crematorium were overwhelmed emotionally and physiologically. In a pandemic hit Mumbai, when disposing corpses of Covid-19 patients had raised suspicion and fear amongst citizens, crematorium workers like Nitin Nagothkar (42) were of huge help to the BMC. In the month of May and June, the number of Covid deaths had increased. The staff at the electric crematoriums across the city were struggling to cope with the workload, along with the fear of contracting the virus. Locals took to streets in protest after the first week of June witnessed close to 30 bodies of Covid-19 patients lining up for cremation everyday as compared to four to five bodies previously, or even none on some days. Nagothkar helped the civic administration in times when crematoriums were unoperational temporarily Bhoiwada. Despite fear of exposing himself to the deadly pathogen, and one of his own colleagues testing COVID-19 positive, Nagothkar continued to perform his duty.”

Akhilesh Kumar Misra, Senior Section Engineer (P. Way), Andheri section

Endorsed by: Sumit Thakur, Chief Public Relation Officer, WR

Akhilesh Kumar Misra
Sumit Thakur

Special achievements: “Akhilesh Kumar Misra is one of the most dedicated employees of Western Railway (WR) who has never shied away from doing his best to achieve targets. He has executed several projects making commuting a pleasurable experience in the Mumbai Suburban Section of WR. He has been credited with transforming and improving mobility over the suburban section. He has played a vital role in removing the bottlenecks at various locations of the suburban section which impaired the speed of trains. These bottlenecks, termed as speed restrictions in railway parlance, curtailed down the speed of trains which in turn affected the punctuality. Misra successfully removed the Permanent Speed Restriction (PSR) in one the busiest section of Churchgate-Borivali, thereby, helping improve the speed of both local and outstation trains. The removal of Permanent Speed Restriction falling between Bandra and Khar (10.091 km) was of a tedious and gruelling nature. Misra also meticulously planned a very complicated re-gardening work on Mithi River at Bandra and completed the work within a day. It is noteworthy to mention that the entire task was accomplished during the months of July and August 2020, when COVID-19 was at its peak, and it was very difficult to arrange machinery and labourers. Due to his dedicated efforts, WR has improved the punctuality of trains, and enhanced the safety and speed of both local as well as Mail/Express trains over the Mumbai suburban section.”

Dr Vidya Thakur, Medical Superintendent, Rajawadi Hospital

Endorsed by: Dr Deepak Baid, President, Association of Medical Consultant

Dr Vidya Thakur
Dr Deepak Baid

Special achievements: “A Covid warrior who led from the front, Dr Thakur started the Rajawadi Covid ward, motivated the resident doctors like a mother, and took care of all their needs — from PPE kits to food to accommodation. She stood by her team like a rock during the lockdown. Taking care when they were sick, and even worked from her hospital bed when she got infected with the deadly virus. She even took care of the patients’ emotional needs. Salute the selfless dedication of a true Covid warrior.”

Aditi Joshi Marathe, Registrar in Ophthalmology Dept, Nair hospital

Endorsed by: Dr Mohan Joshi, Dean, Sion hospital

Aditi Joshi Marathe
Dr Mohan Joshi

Special achievements: “They say, you never know how strong you are, until being strong is the only option! It all started in April when the coronavirus was wreaking havoc across India, and BYL Nair Hospital was declared Dedicated Covid Hospital (DCH). Aditi Joshi Marthe, an ophthalmology resident, was caught unaware and unprepared for what the future had in store for them. As the number of positive patients started to rise, Aditi was posted in Covid wards under supervision from physicians and anaesthesiologists. She rose to the occasion and arranged food, transport and accommodation for all of us in hotels, as hostels were cramped. The grid and determination of Aditi, who has been working for months, is to say the least laudable! Until we find a vaccine or cure, my message to everyone reading this would be: Don’t let your guard down! Always mask up! Stay safe and let’s fight the virus united.”

Ram Chandra Shinde, Retired Ticket Inspector, Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking

Endorsed by: Dr Anil Kumar Singhal, Chief Medical Officer (BEST) undertaking

Ram Chandra Shinde
Dr Anil Kumar Singhal

Special achievements: “Ram Chandra Shinde tested Covid positive in the month of May, while performing his duties as a frontline worker with the BEST in Mumbai. Shinde was a Ticket Inspector, and while our buses were providing transportation to emergency service providers during the lockdown, Shinde’s job included manning the buses, ferrying the incoming passengers to Mumbai Airport under ‘Vande Bharat Mission’ to isolation centres, and travelling with the frontline workers. His retiring day was nearing, and the management had asked him to go on paid leave owing to his age. But Shinde declined, and performed his duties till the last day of his job. Shinde’s gesture was an inspiration to those who were wary of stepping out when the pandemic was at its peak. It was a pleasure to work with Shinde. He set an example of being a true BEST employee by working selflessly till his last working day with the organisation.”

Vaqar Javeed, BMC Executive Engineer, H west ward

Endorsed by: Vinayak Vispute, Assistant Municipal Commissioner and Ward Officer, H west ward, Bandra (West)

Vaqar Javeed
Vinayak Vispute

Special achievements: “Setting up isolation centres and COVID care facilities was a very difficult task for us when the pandemic outbreak hit India. Time was running out, cases were rising, and there was a scarcity of resources. We jointly identified the locations, and Javeed took the task of setting up three CCC-1 centres (775 beds), four CCC-2 centres (220 beds), and one dedicated transit centre for migrant labourers. Due to the lockdown, mobilising labourers and acquisition of logistics became difficult. But, Javeed accomplished the task given to him in a very short period by working round the clock with workers and even procuring raw materials directly from the factories. It’s a boon to have an officer like him, who worked selflessly in such testing time, at our ward office.”

Tejas Sonawane, Constable, Cuffe Parade police station

Endorsed by: Vishwas Nangare Patil, Joint Commissioner of Police, Law and Order

Tejas Sonawane
Vishwas Nangare Patil

Special achievements: “There are many such police persons who have gone beyond their duties and helped during the pandemic. Tejas Sonawane (34) is one of them. He started an ambulance service during the crisis when the entire healthcare system was burdened. With limited resources he converted a car into a temporary ambulance and used it to ferry needy patients to hospitals. Being an essential worker, he followed safety first approach, which was of utmost importance. While appreciating his selfless work, I must also congratulate his seniors who encouraged and provided their vital support, so that he could continue his philanthropic work. The police department will continue to encourage and lend their support to all such police persons.”

Sandhya Sheelvant, Police Naik, Shahu Nagar police station (Central Mumbai)

Endorsed by: Dnyaneshwar Chavan, Additional Commissioner of Police (Central Region)

Sandhya Sheelvant
Dnyaneshwar Chavan

Special achievements: “When people were scared of contracting the virus, Police Naik Sandhya Sheelvant of Shahu Nagar police station went above and beyond her duty by cremating over eight unclaimed bodies of patients at Dharavi, which was the biggest COVID hotspot in the city. Despite the fact that Sheelvant has two kids and elderly in-laws at home, she completed her social responsibility of cremating those whose own families were unable to perform last rites, and also completed the required paperwork. It is a commendable job on her part to have shown compassion towards strangers, and her dedication to the duty is admirable.”

Gautam Chavan, Constable, JJ Marg police station

Endorsed by: Shahaji Umap, DCP Zone 1 (additional charge)

Gautam Chavan
Shahaji Umap

Special achievements: “During a time when COVID-19 fatalities were at its peak in the city, police constable Gautam Chavan (39) who was assigned to Sir JJ Hospital’s COVID-19 ward, helped over 3,000 police personnel and their family members, guiding them through the various medical procedures. His task was to assist policemen and their family members who came to the hospital for COVID-19 tests. While working relentlessly for over four months, he contracted the virus, but that didn’t deter his spirit. We need more policemen like him and we applaud the efforts put in by Chavan and others like him.”

Yash Marwah, Founder of Let India Breathe

Rishav Ranjan, Law student

Kapil Agarwal, Lawyer and Student of TISS

Endorsed by: Stalin D, Founder of NGO Vanashakti, conservationist, and one of the leading figures of Save Aarey movement

Yash Marwah
Rishav Ranjan
Kapil Agarwal
Stalin D

Special achievements: “In October 2019, when the Bombay High Court dismissed the Save Aarey group’s petition seeking declaration of Aarey as a forest, our (Save Aarey campaigners and Aarey Conservation Group) dreams came crumbling down. The HC said only the Supreme Court could declare Aarey as a forest. After being briefed about the situation by Yash and Kapil, Rishav wrote to the Chief Justice of Supreme Court seeking a stay on the cutting of trees for the MMRCL’s car shed located on 33 hectares land in Aarey Colony. The site is on the bank of the Mithi River, with several channels and tributaries flowing through it, and the construction could flood Mumbai, he argued. The court accepted the letter as Public Interest Litigation (PIL) and set up a special Bench. Following this, the Apex court heard the Group’s case, and granted a stay on felling of the trees and metro car shed work. Kapil, who had informed Rishav about the situation, became a vital connect between Delhi and Mumbai. In fact, he also went to jail with others during one of the ‘Save Aarey’ protests. Yash, a member of Aarey Conservation Group and founder of Let India Breathe, along with other members, was in constant touch with Kapil over the Aarey situation. And, eventually Kapil too become a member of the Group. I remain eternally grateful to these three souls, whose timely intervention ensured that Aarey was saved.”

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