Bharat Maa Shaheed Samman Trust, led by philanthropist and industrialist Sanjay Dalmia, felicitated an evening to honor Marathas and accomplished Maharashtrians on 16 September.
The glittering ceremony took place at The Oberoi Hotel’s iconic Rooftop in Mumbai. A motley crew of celebrities from the Maratha and Maharashtrian communities was thrust in the spotlight as Nationalist Sanjay Dalmia presented them with honors for their varied accomplishments.
The evening was attended by known personalities of Mumbai and Royal families including Rouble Nagi, Bina and Talat Aziz, Poonam Dhillon, Nachiket Barve, Nisha Jamwal, James Ferreira, Pallavi Jaikishan, Princess Krishna Kumari of Panna, Brazilian Console, Rashmi Jolly and Lerato Mashile, Consulate General of the Republic of South Africa.
Asad Lalji, Jamini Ahluwalia, Nazneen Bedi, Arzaan and Khushnuma Khambatta, Radhika Seksaria, Leena Singh, Seema and Jaideep Mehrotra were among the other prominent figures present at the event.
The cynosure of all eyes was the Maharaja of Baroda, Samarjitsinh Rao Gaekwad and his gorgeous wife, Maharani Radhika Raje, who were honored at the event, along with Uday Mahurkar, Vijayendra Ghatge, Ujjwala Raut and Nachiket Barve. Late Smt. Kishori Amonkar and Late Shri Bhimsen Joshi were posthumously remembered and honored at the evening.
Dressed elegantly in a pink chiffon saree, Maharani Radhika Raje regaled the audience with anecdotes about how she seamlessly adapted to the Maratha culture after her marriage, since she is originally a Rajput Princess from Wankaner, and how she enjoys promoting the culture at various events.
Maharaja Samarjitsinh Rao Gaekwad, too, entertained all the assembled dignitaries with his witty remarks. He peppered his short speech with interesting tidbits about growing up with the Maratha cultural influences.
Mr Sanjay Dalmia took the occasion to express his personal views about Maharashtra and its people. He said, “We all know Marathas were great warriors and rulers, Chattrapati Shivaji being the greatest of all. There is much more to Marathas and Maharashtrian achievements which not everyone knows. They are geniuses who have created milestones in various subjects including art, culture, politics, science etc.”
Mr Dalmia also highlighted that the first plane was created and flown by an Indian pioneer Shivkar Bapuji Talpade, a Maharashtrian at Chowpatty several years before Wright Brothers.
Chief Guest of the event, Shaina NC, couldn’t agree more with Industrialist Sanjay Dalmia. In her short speech, she said, “While people from Maharashtra have been making the nation proud by creating excellence in various walks of life, we must also acknowledge that some of the best politicians of India have been from Maharashtra.”