It was a night of achievements, a night of high spirits, and a night to remember. DARPAN Magazine’s 6th Annual Extraordinary Achievement Awards 2015 was indeed a grand affair. Right from the buzzing red carpet and the glamourous fashion show, to the excellent awards and the beautiful guests, every element added to the night’s success.
Recognized as the pre-eminent South Asian event-of-the-year, DARPAN hosted its Achievement Awards in the company of esteemed social, business and political elites. The spectacular red-carpet Awards gala honoured 10 remarkable individuals within the South Asian community who embody the spirit of community and believe in giving back through their own avenues in an effort to build society.
Adding a vibe of affluence to the red carpet entrance was the showcase of the latest luxury Cadillac models and the gorgeous ice sculptures depicting DARPAN’s journey of 11 years in publishing excellence. Other features on the red carpet included a media centre with live interviews, a media wall to pose for photographs, and champagne and black and gold martinis.
Canadian television personality and ET Now presenter, Sangita Patel, who flew in from Toronto, was the Master of Ceremonies for the event. Named one of Hello! Canada Magazine’s ‘50 Most Beautiful People’ in 2014, Sangita Patel has become a familiar face on Canada’s leading entertainment show, Entertainment Tonight Canada. Born and raised in Toronto, Ontario, Patel joined ET Canada in early 2013. Now as an entertainment reporter, she spends most of her time covering movie premiers, giving viewers a behind-the-scenes look into glamourous events like the Cannes Film Festival and interviewing Hollywood celebrities. Throughout her career on television, she has been a part of TV shows such as Toronto Living,Rushes, Weather Network and Breakfast Television. She has been awarded Anokhi magazine’s TV personality of the year and is the recipient of Trailblazer Award at the Reelworld Film Festival.
This year’s keynote speaker was USB co-founder Ajay Bhatt. Bhatt, along with his team at Intel founded the Universal Serial Bus (USB) – a device found in billions of electronic devices all over the world today. Bhatt joined Intel Corporation in 1990 as a senior staff architect on the chipset architecture team in Folsom. He is currently Intel’s Chief Architect and Fellow, Client Computing Group and credited as being the father of the USB standard. Beyond the USB, Bhatt has developed several widely used technologies, including Accelerated Graphics Port, PCI Express, Platform Power management architecture and various chipset improvements. He holds 70 US and International patents, and has received many awards for his work.
He won the Achievement in Excellence Award for his contribution in PCI Express specification development in 2002. He received The Light of India Award in 2012 for his contributions in advancement of science and technology. In 2013, he was awarded the Outstanding Achievement in Science & Technology Award at The Asian Awards in London. He won the European Inventor Award 2013 for leading a team of computer experts at Intel that developed USB technology. Bhatt’s creation has helped the world connect better with each other. His achievements make him an inspirational figure for upcoming creators and youth.
MC Patel’senergy and witty sense of humour had the guests engaged to what’s coming next and entertained. Many known figures and celebrities from within the community and British Columbia graced the occasion with their presence. Spotted at the event were Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner, TransLink Minister Peter Fassbender, Member of Legislative Assembly for Surrey-Tynehead Amrik Virk, MLA for Burnaby-Edmonds Raj Chouhan, and Surrey Councillor Tom Gill, among others. Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner, who looked lovely in a black and silver Indian fusion outfit, took the stage to share a few words with the audience. Guests from within and outside the community added glamour and style to the night with their colourful, graceful and fashionable outfits.
The Awards night also included a refreshing question and answer session with our Chief Guest and Keynote Speaker Ajay Bhatt - whoshared with the audience the story behind his popular invention and his inspiring journey so far. The most-awaited part of the event was the fashion show by Vivah Collection. The popular fashion house showcased its Fall 2015 non-bridal collection comprising vibrant colour palettes, exuberant fabrics of beautiful florals, and mirror work detailing. The collection was inspired by the infused vision of today’s fashionista. The breathtaking show, gorgeous models, and catchy ramp music added more energy to the stage and had the guests applauding and hoping for more.
The awards session – the main element of the event – was all about achievements, excellence and community spirit. Ten amazing individuals from the South Asian community were recognized for their extraordinary achievements and for reflecting their heritage in a remarkable way. The never-ending applause by the guests, along with the inspiring thank you speeches by the winners generated a feeling of pride and unity at the event.
The atmosphere at the awards night was lively, without a moment of dullness. Every new session or element that DARPAN planned had the guests in awe. The evening was young; there was music, food, glamour and beautiful people having a great time. The highlight of the event, besides the awards of course, was the live entertainment by the talented Manj Musik. The talented singer, who has worked with Saif Ali Khan, Shahrukh Khan and Akshay Kumar, amongst others, took the stage with singer-wife Nindy Kaur, and got the guests dancing. Guests were seen dancing, mingling and having a great time – making DARPAN Awards a successful event and a night to remember.