The Weekend Leader - ALERT Recognises Lifesavers: Heroes of Floods, Road Safety, and Water Conservation Awarded

ALERT Recognises Lifesavers: Heroes of Floods, Road Safety, and Water Conservation Awarded



Villagers of Pudukudi took care of 500 stranded train passengers during the recent floods in Tamil N

Individuals who made significant contributions to saving and protecting lives were recognised and honoured at a function organised in Chennai on Friday.

Organised by ALERT, a non-profit advocating for the 'Right to Life,' the event recognised 13 unsung heroes for their outstanding achievements in several categories.

The awardees included Anburaj, who had bravely saved 200 people during the recent floods in southern Tamil Nadu. He carried them one by one over 250 metres of 10ft deep water in just 12 hours

Another awardee, Raghavendra Kumar, widely recognised as the Helmet Man of India, was moved by the loss of a friend in a road mishap, and vowed to prevent such tragedies.

Embarking on a mission, he distributed over 70,000 free helmets on national highways over ten years, saving 35 lives through his initiative.

Rat Hole Miners awarded for their role in the rescue of 41 workers from the Uttarkashi tunnel (Photos: Special Arrangement)

In the organisation category, Dharani Geotech Engineers India Private Limited from Tiruchengode was awarded for their critical role in the rescue of 41 workers from the Uttarkashi Tunnel collapse.

Dharani employees drilled a hole over the tunnel to insert a 6-inch pipeline, enabling the delivery of food and water. This lifeline kept the trapped workers alive and healthy for 17 days until the time of their rescue.

Another organisation from Rajasthan, Dhara Sansthan, was also recognised for its work in water conservation. The organisation has built numerous water bodies and tanks in the drought-prone region of western Rajasthan.

Awards were also presented to the Rat Hole Miners, who played a crucial role in the rescue of 41 workers from the collapsed Uttarkashi tunnel.

These miners had risked their lives, demonstrating remarkable courage and empathy during the last phase of the rescue operation, when technology and machinery proved ineffective.

The whole village of Pudukudi in Melur, southern Tamil Nadu, was recognised for their heroic act during the December floods.

The villagers came to the rescue of around 500 passengers of a train that was surrounded by flood waters. The villagers who themselves were reeling under the impact of floods rescued the passengers and provided shelter for them in a local temple.

They provided them food and water for two days, despite their own challenges due to the flooding.

Former Tata Group Chairman Ratan N Tata was honoured with the ALERT Being Award for Lifetime Achievement for his philanthropy and business excellence.

Sarabjeet Singh, senior vice president, Operations, Indian hotels Company Limited, collected the award on behalf of Ratan Tata.

Mike Muralidharan, Chairman, ALERT, expressed the organisation's plans to increase the number of trained emergency response volunteers significantly.

Mike Muralidharan, Chairman, ALERT

“At times of an emergency, most people have the heart to help, but do not know how to go about it. The aim is to have more people evangelised in handling emergency response to save precious lives, so that no life is lost for dearth of attention,” he said.

Speaking about the purpose of the awards, Kala Balasundaram, Founder Trustee, ALERT, said, “The 7th edition of the ALERT Being Awards celebrates the remarkable contributions of the real-life unsung heroes who embody the spirit of compassion and service.

“Through this event, we not only honour their selfless actions but also emphasise the critical need for widespread awareness and preparedness in handling emergencies.”

Rajesh R Trivedi, the Co-Founder and Managing Trustee at ALERT, said that the narratives of the Rat Hole Miners, the villagers of Pudukudi Melur, and exceptional individuals like nurse Jeyalakshmmi, were examples of acts of people going beyond the call of duty. Trivedi pointed out that demonstrating compassion is at the heart of human existence.- TWL Bureau

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