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Shilpa Shetty recognised for propelling India's advancement with the Rajiv Gandhi Award

Shilpa Shetty recognised for propelling India’s advancement with the Rajiv Gandhi Award

After having met the Queen, the former Prime Minister of Britain and the Mayor of London,
Shilpa Shetty received one of the highest recognitions from her homeland India in the form of the 'Rajiv Gandhi National Quality Award' at a grand ceremony which took place on 12th August 2007 at National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA), Mumbai.
Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, leader of Congress Party Ms Sonia Gandhi, Union Minister of External Affairs Mr Pranab Mukherjee, and Chief Minister of Maharashtra Mr Vilasrao Deshmukh graced the occasion. 
The award, which has been named after India’s late Prime Minister Mr Rajiv Gandhi, recognises the new thrust he had given to the quality movement in India to propel the country into the 21st Century with pride. Shilpa Shetty received international respect and adulation when she won this year's Celebrity Big Brother, following a worldwide controversy that placed her in the centre of a debate on race and bullying.
In personifying the core of Indian cultural values and tradditions and handling the situation with such grace and decorum, Shilpa has become an international ambassador for India and its values of equality, peace and justice, rallying support from across the globe. 
Shilpa was delighted while expressing her heartfelt gratitude at the event. She said, “I am sincerely grateful and humbled by the honour that has so kindheartedly been presented to me. It has always been my utmost intention to elevate India as a nation to be proud of. Its values, traditions and culture are deeply embedded in me and have made me what I am today.
India has emerged as one of the world’s leading players and to be recognised as an individual to have contributed to this change is a privilege for which I express my deep-felt gratitude.” Shilpa joined the ranks of other eminent personalities such as Mukesh Ambani, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Adi Godrej, Anand Mahindra, Sunil Mittal, Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Sant Singh Chatwal, Shah Rukh Khan, Tarun Tejpal, Rajdeep Sardesai, Sania Mirza and Sachin Tendulkar who have also been bestowed with the prestigious accolade. 
The 'Rajiv Gandhi National Quality Award' was instituted by the Bureau of Indian Standards in 1991 with the approval of the Government of India, with a view to encouraging Indian manufacturing and service organisations to strive for excellence and giving special recognition to those who are considered to be the leaders of quality movement in India.
The award has been designed in line with similar awards in other developed countries, like 'Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award' in USA, 'Deming Prize' in Japan and the 'European Quality Award'.