Rajasthan teenager Payal Jangid was conferred with the Changemaker Award by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on Wednesday. For her efforts to eradicate practices like child labour and child marriage in Rajasthan, Payal was honoured in the same event in which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had received the Goalkeepers Global Goals Award.
On receiving this award, she told ANI, "I'm extremely happy, PM also got this award. The way I've eradicated these problems in our village, want to do the same globally."
Coming from Hinsla village in Rajasthan, Payal served as the head of the Bal Panchayat (Children's Council) in her village as part of the 'Bal Mitra Gram' (Child-Friendly Village) program, which comes under Satyarthi's Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA).
Nobel Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi congratulated Payal for winning the Changemaker award from the foundation.
"Payal made us proud today, she is one of those young ladies who are on the forefront against exploitation of children in India and elsewhere. She was courageous to refuse her marriage, and of other children in the village and neighbouring villages." said the social activist.
Satyarthi also tweeted to extend his wishes, "Sumedha ji and I are so proud and moved to watch our daughter Payal receiving Changemaker Award from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation now in New York. She refused her marriage and her entire village was free from child marriages and labour."
The annual Goalkeeper awards, in five categories, are presented to leaders and individuals for their efforts in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The categories are Progress, Changemaker, Campaign, Goalkeepers Voice and the Global Goalkeeper.
In this event, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation also honoured Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the Global Goalkeeper Award for his contributions to the cleanliness drive and efforts to "improve access to sanitation in India through Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan."
The Swachh Bharat Mission was launched by the Modi government in 2014 and its components include the construction of household toilets, community and public toilets and solid waste management.
(With inputs from ANI)