Bhubaneswar: Prime Minister Naveen Patnaik opened the first edition of the Business Eminence Awards here on Saturday, praising the efforts of business leaders to maintain a positive business climate even during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The program, jointly organized by Orissa POST and its sister Odia daily newspaper Dharitri, aimed to celebrate the spirit of indigenous entrepreneurship and to recognize the efforts of business people in Odisha to create prosperity for the state to overcome all adversity, especially the COVID Pandemic to overcome.
A total of 42 social and economic leaders of the state were honored on this occasion.
In his inaugural speech, which was held in virtual mode, the Prime Minister spoke about the state government’s support for holding hands for all branches of the economy last year. “I am delighted that Dharitri and Orissa POST have taken the initiative to honor Odisha’s outstanding entrepreneurs and business leaders. These executives not only managed to grow their businesses during the pandemic, but also kept a positive outlook in a dire situation, ”he said.
He went on to say, “Although the post-pandemic situation has shaken the global economy and spared none, the inspiring success stories of local businesspeople have contributed to the growth of a favorable business climate in the state.”
Dharmendra Pradhan, the main guest of the event, welcomed the stimulating achievements of the Business Eminence Award winners and urged local business houses to focus on adding value to the various mined minerals in the state. “This will help create more prosperity for the state and fuel growth across the province.”
“Odisha is stocked with an assortment of minerals and we currently account for 16 percent of the country’s total metal production. In terms of added value, however, we are far behind other countries. This is what both the state government and our entrepreneurs must concentrate on. We need to create more prosperity for the lower and middle classes, ”he said.
“If we do not improve the lot of the lower middle class and create more prosperity, the economy of the state will not grow. The role of education, the service industry and others will play a crucial role in this, ”said the minister.
Vishal Dev, Special Representative for Tourism, delivered the keynote address and discussed how the state, once considered backward, has become the “most preferred investment destination” over the past two decades.
“Odisha was considered a background state around the year 2000, but in the past two decades we have become one of the best governed states. We are leaders in several areas including disaster management. We are a state with an excess of power and are now developing into the country’s sports capital, ”he said.
Dharitri and Orissa POST editor Tathagata Satpathy welcomed the guests and award winners, saying that the Business Eminence Awards are aimed at recognizing the efforts of business people who have not lowered their guards during the pandemic but rather set themselves up as role models for many in the state and in the US have turned out to be out there.
Speaking about the concept behind the awards, Satpathy said, “This is a very critical period in global history. COVID was a great leveler. It taught us all different lessons and forced us to look within. It made us aware of our similarities. While many in the world failed and collapsed, the winners were the brave warriors who not only overcame the difficulties but also succeeded and grew. We see them as the social and economic leaders of the state. “
Adyasha Satpathy, CEO of the two publications, gave the vote of thanks.