The Thumb Print webzine announces list of the Coolest Northeasterners of 2013
The term ‘cool’ has a modern connotation, a term that at once spells super achievement and the panache to carry with dignity the frills (often also nuisances) that come with success. An achievement that does not weigh down the achiever but powers greater desire to reach for the stars. The Thumb Print’s choice of the 10 Coolest Northeasterners are what cool people should be — achievers who do not believe in resting on their laurels, who have the wind beneath their wings. A million salutes….
Our esteemed jury members had a tough time picking the Coolest Northeasterners of 2013. The jury members include:
Jyoti Malhotra, senior journalist, Delhi
Sriparna Baruah, Management Professional, Assam
Pomi Baruah, bureaucrat, Assam
Ananya S Guha, academic and poet, Meghalaya
Bjorn De Niese, entrepreneur, Sikkim
Vasanthi Hariprakash, Independent journalist and radio anchor, Bangalore
The Coolest Northeasterners of 2013 list is in a random order.
SIDDHARTH YOUZONE and The Basketball Team of Ekalavya Model Residential School, Gangyap, Sikkim (http://emrsgangyap.com/) & (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwy-XPRHslA). The school is located in Gangyap, Sikkim – the second last habitable village before Mount Kanchenjunga’s base. The team won the National Basketball championships two years in a row!
BINALAKSHMI NEPRAM, Founder, Manipur Women Gun Survivors Network She has been globetrotting carrying issues of the Northeast, especially women of the region, the world over.
SAMBHA LAMARR from Shillong. She is the brain behind the Creative Arts Literature and Music Festival (CALM Festival) in Shillong. The festival in 2013 brought in stalwarts like Jerry Pinto, Victor Banerjee, David Davidar to Shillong.
ASHIQ ZAMAN: a young IRS officer who started a group called MY-FACTS (Muslim Youth — Forum against Communalism, Terrorism and Sedition). For the first time in Northeast India, he has been able to garner a group of educated Muslim youth and discuss progressive issues.
KALPANA PATOWARY, the undisputed Bhojpuri queen. This girl from Assam has established herself as a leading singer of Bhojpuri and has also sang the superhit number Gandi Baat. She won the Best Bhojpuri Female Playback Singer Award 2013 Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh for Chhath Song “Chhathi Mai Ke” film Nagin.
PRAJWAL PARAJULY, Author of “The Gurkha’s Daughter” – his debut book which was a number one bestseller in India the day it was released. Hailing from Sikkim, Prajwal was the only Indian/Asian writer on the shortlist of this year’s Dylan Thomas Prize for Literature. His debut Novel – “Land where I Flee” released this December has also been called the best novel of the year by the Hindustan Times.
LARSING MING SAWAIN of Shillong. Son of a hotelier Ming has been instrumental in bringing Lajong Sports club at the national level in football. He has been instrumental single Handedly for putting the state on the national map. He has introduced professionalism in soccer in the NE region by importing foreign players, and players from different parts of the country.
ALOBO NAGA, singer from Nagaland. He had been appointed as the State Icon for SVEEP campaign by the Election commission of India, Worked with Tim Palmer , Grammy Nominee sound engineer, made music for two movies, Toured South East Asia countries, Open for Famous American Band, Hoobastank and Guitarist of Micheal Jackson, Jennifer Batten, Released 2 hit singles – “Laughter & Tears” and “the greatest Gift”.
ARMAN ALI, Guwahati-based disabled rights activist for taking up issues of the disabled to the national fora. Arman Ali, 32, is currently Executive Director of Shishu Sarothi, Centre for Rehabilitation and Training for Multiple Disability, a not-for-profit organization which has been working in the area of disability in Northeast India since 1987.
JADAV PAYENG, also known as ‘forest man of Assam’ who has built a forest all by himself. Over the course of several decades, he planted and tended trees on a sandbar of the river Brahmaputra turning it into a forest reserve. The forest, called Molai forest after him, is located near Kokilamukh of Jorhat, Assam and encompasses an area of about 1,360 hectares.