Asian Achievers Awards, London

Woman of the Year Priya Lakhani with Nitin Ganatra, Raj Loomba and CB Patel

London-based ABPL Group, which publishes weeklies such as Gujarat Samachar and Asian Voice, honours several prominent people from the British-Asian Community for their excellence in respective fields. CB Patel, veteran journalist and the editor of the group, welcomed the august gathering which includes cabinet ministers, politicians and key members from the business community.

The lifetime achievement award went to Sir Anwar Pervez, founder of the successful cash and carry chain, Bestway Group. …Photo Credit: PR Mediapix

Media, Arts and Culture

Hanif Kureishi CBE: Hanif Kureishi CBE is an English playwright, screenwriter and filmmaker and novelist. In 2008, The Times included Kureishi in their list of “The 50 greatest British writers since 1945”. Kureishi was born in Bromley, South London to a Pakistani father, Rafiushan Kureishi, and an English mother, Audrey Buss. He started his career in the 1970s as a pornography writer, under the pseudonyms Antonia French and Karim. He wrote My Beautiful Laundrette in 1985, which won the New York Film Critics Best Screenplay Award and an Academy Award nomination for Best Screenplay. He also wrote the screenplay for Sammy and Rosie Get Laid (1987) amongst many others.

 Woman of the Year – Priya Lakhani OBE

Former barrister, Priya Lakhani, founded FMCG business Masala Masala in 2008 successfully launching it’s products into nationwide supermarket chains and independent retailers. The company’s charitable arm has provided over 1 million meals and 35,000 vaccinations to the underprivileged in India and Africa. Priya’s second business, CENTURY-TECH, is set to disrupt the education sector by utilising big data and data mining techniques to improve students’ learning outcomes
Priya is a member of the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills’ Entrepreneurs’ Forum and an advisory board member to the Education Foundation.



Business Person of the Year

Mahmud Kamani

Mahmud Kamani founded Boohoo with Carol Kane in 2006, leveraging over 28 years of experience in the fashion industry. Mahmud’s involvement in the fashion and apparel industry spans all areas of the supply chain from importer to wholesaler to retailer. Mahmud has sourced garments from all over the world. An entrepreneur in the retail, trade and hospitality sectors, Mahmud has developed a loyal team, some of whom have remained with him for 20 years.

Entrepreneur of the Year – Dr Richie Nanda

Dr Richie Nanda is an international security mag- nate and the Executive Chairman of Topsgrup and The Shield Group. It’s annual turnover is expected to be £160 million with 130 offices worldwide, including headquarters in London, and approximately 8,500 customers. In 2012, Dr Nanda became the only entrepreneur of an Indian MNC to purchase a 100% stake in a British security company, The Shield Group, now the

Achievement In Community Service- Wasim Gulzar Khan MBE

Wasim was the first British born Pakistani to play professional cricket in England, playing in the double winning Warwickshire team in 1995. He also represented Sussex and Derbyshire. In 2005 he was recruited by Lord Mervyn King to set up Chance to Shine, a Cricket-Education Enterprise.

He has been CEO since 2009. Chance to Shine is now recognised as the biggest programme of its kind, in the world. It has engaged and inspired 2.5 million young people (including 1 million girls) and has raised £55 million since 2005. His auto- biography ‘Brim Full of Passion’ was awarded the prestigious ‘Wisden Book of the Year’ award in 2006. In 2013, he was awarded an MBE for services to cricket and the community.

Professional Of The Year

Prof. Sir Tejinder Singh Virdee, FRS

Prof. Sir Tejinder Singh Virdee, FRS is an experi- mental physicist and Professor of Physics at Imperial College London. He is best known for originating the concept of CMS with a few other colleagues and has been referred to as one of the ‘founding fathers’ of the project.

Virdee was elected Fellow of the Royal Society and of the Institute of Physics in 2012. In recognition of his work on CMS he has been awarded the Institute of Physics (IOP) 2007 High Energy Physics Prize and the IOP 2009 Chadwick Medal and Prize. In 2014, Virdee was knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for services to science.

Sports Personality of the Year – Dilawer Singh MBE

Dilawer Singh MBE is the Sports Council for Glasgow Elected Director. He was the first Asian and Sikh police officer in Scotland and spent over 30 years with Strathclyde Police and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate. A former wrestler Dilawar, keen kabbadi player, referee and coach, badminton player and coach and marathon runner, Dilawar has raised thousands of pounds for different international charities through his sporting exploits.

Dilawar was also part of the 2014 Bid Team and now sits on sub commit- tees for recruiting volunteers and planning the legacy of the games. Amongst a list of prestigious awards and titles, particular high- lights include Dilawar receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Lord Provost of Glasgow for his contribution and service to Sport; Honorary President of the Association of Indian Organisations.


Uniformed And Civil Services – Nazir Afzal OBE

Nazir Afzal OBE LLD (hon) is the Chief Crown Prosecutor for the North West of England, with responsibility for nearly 100,000 prosecutions a year. He is National lead for tackling Violence Against Women & Girls and Child Abuse. He also leads on tackling so called honour crimes and forced marriage. His successful prosecution of people like Stuart Hall have demonstrated that nobody is above the law. He is the public face of the justice system and regularly appears in the media leading the public debate. His voluntary activity includes being Pro-Chancellor of Brunel University London and Trustee of three charities working with vulnerable people and supporting children.

Lifetime Achievement Award – Sir Anwar Pervez OBE, HI

Sir Anwar Pervez OBE, HI is the founder and Chairman of Bestway Group. He was born in 1935 and moved to the UK at age of 21. In 1963 he established his first convenience store in London’s Earls Court. By the early seventies he had ten well-provided convenience stores in and around West London.

In 1976 Sir Anwar Pervez, opened Bestway’s first wholesale warehouse in Acton, West London. As of 2010 Bestway Cash & Carry is the largest independent wholesale group and 2nd largest wholesaler with 61 Warehouses spread all over the UK.

Editor’s Awards

Selected by CB Patel, Founder/Chairman

Asian Achievers Awards

 Editor’s Award for Rising Star

Naughty Boy Aka Shahid Khan

Shahid Khan, often credited by his artist and production name Naughty Boy, is a British DJ, song- writer, record producer and musician. In 2012, Khan signed a three-year publishing deal with Sony ATV. Khan launched himself as a record producer under the moniker “Naughty Boy” and runs Naughty Boy Recordings. Khan spent 2011 and 2012 working on records for Leona Lewis, JLS, Cheryl Cole and Tinie Tempah, among others. In 2013, Naughty Boy released his debut album Hotel Cabana featuring the number one hit “La La La”, featuring Sam Smith and “Lifted”, another collaboration with Emeli Sandé. His debut album peaked at number two in the UK and his single, “La La La” was awarded ‘Best Song’ and ‘Best Video’ at the MOBO Awards 18th anniversary.

Editor’s Award for Bravery and Patriotism

(Late) Flt Lt Rakesh Chauhan

The late Flight Lieutenant Rakesh Chauhan has been honoured with the Editor’s Award for Bravery and Patriotism at the Asian Achievers Awards. The late Fl Lt Chauhan tragically lost his life when his Lynx helicopter crashed during a routine flight in Afghanistan.

The young pilot died alongside fellow Intelligence Corps non-commissioned officer Lance Corporal Oliver Thomas, Captain Thomas Clarke, Warrant Officer Class 2 Spencer Faulkner and Corporal James Walters from the Army Air Corps. The funeral service for the 29-year old drew in more than 1000 mourners in Leicester, who lined the streets to pay their final respects.

Photo Credit: PR Mediapix

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