KOCHI: T P Padmanabhan, environmentalist and director of Payyannur-based Society for Environmental Education in Kerala (SEEK), an organisation spearheading environment protection campaigns and agitations, has won this year’s Social Service Award of Samakalika Malayalam Vaarika, a sister publication of The New Indian Express.
The award carries a plaque, citation and a purse of Rs 1 lakh. This year’s winner was selected by a jury comprising environmentalist M K Prasad, writer N Sasidharan and literary critic G Madhusudanan.
Samakalika Malayalam Vaarika had instituted the award in 2013 to honour persons who dedicate their lives to social service. Sixty-eight-year-old Padmanabhan has been working relentlessly for environment protection for the past several decades. He became the director of SEEK from 1987 and also the editor of the organisation’s mouth piece ‘Soochi Mukhi’.
He was the key person who led various agitations in Kerala seeking protection of the environment which included the famous Silent Valley movement that set the stage for environmental activism in the state.
The previous winners of the award are V P Suhara, social worker from Kozhikode: Raziya Banu, a social worker from Palakkad; V C Raju of Murikkasseri, Idukki; Krishnan Pallam of Pattambi, who runs the destitute home ‘Abhayam’; and Sajini Mathews, who founded Snehabhavan at Muttam, Melukavu.