Mumbai's East Indians recently presented their 'Mobai Gaothan Panchayat East Indian Awards' to individuals and organisations associated with their community. Among the awardees is Roger Drego, the head of Electrocraft, a company that organises concert shows and rallies. Aashish D'mello, a former Bandra resident now working as an editor in the American film and television industry, was named the 'East Indian Icon of the Year.'
Father Victor Anton Dalmet received the title of 'East Indian Priest of the Year' for his efforts in preserving the traditional music and songs of the community. Father Ainsley D'mello was honored with the 'East Indian Missionary of the Year' award for his missionary work in Talasari and Manor missions.
Clauderricks Enterprises, owned by an East Indian, was recognized for its 350 feet x 50 feet hoarding at Kamshet on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, setting a record.
Marcellus Gomes, who represented India in hockey between 1981-1987 and won a silver medal at the 1982 Asian Games, was named 'East Indian Sportsperson of the Year.' Mark Dharmai, who participated in the 8th World Dwarf Games in Cologne, Germany, received the 'East Indian Star of the Year' award.
The D'Souza family, involved in the restaurant and wellness business, was honored as the 'East Indian Business Family of the Year.' Christina Speck, a Bandra resident, was recognized as the 'East Indian Author of the Year.'
The Melbourne East Indian Association was acknowledged for its work in celebrating, preserving, and sharing the community's rich culture in Melbourne. Joe Alvares, the author of two history books, received the 'East Indian Historian of the Year' award. Alvares' voice has been used as audio guides at the world heritage sites of Sanchi, Bhimbetka, and Bhojpur.
Additional awards were given to entrepreneurs, journalists, educators, social workers, and religious workers. Ameet Satam was named 'East Indian MLA of the Year' for his work in his constituency, Andheri, which has a large population of East Indians.
Charai Gaothan, an 'urban village' in Thane, was honored as the 'East Indian Gaothan of the Year.' The village is home to the Charai Cross, a revered relic erected in 1913.