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Former Kerala Health Minister K K Shailaja wins a prestigious European award

Thiruvananthapuram: Former Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja has been honoured with the renowned Central European University (CEU) Open Society Prize for her dedication to public health services.

The Open Society Prize was recently announced during the 30th graduation ceremony, which streamed live online. The prize is given out yearly to individuals of outstanding distinction, who serve the principles of an open society.

President and Rector of CEU, Michael Ignatieff, announced the award for ‘Shailaja Teacher’ and mentioned the prize is awarded this year to an ‘extraordinary public servant’ from the developing world.

‘As former Minister of Public Health in the Indian state of Kerala, during the Covid-19 pandemic, KK Shailaja Teacher and the dedicated staff of the public health service demonstrated to the world that determined leadership, community-based public health, and effective communication can save lives,’ said Michael Ignatieff.

‘Shailaja Teacher’s example will inspire young women to enter public service, and Kerala’s record in containing the epidemic gives hope to nations in the developing world. By awarding CEU’s highest award to Shailaja Teacher, the university honours a public servant and female leader for her commitment to public health services, the bedrock of every open society,’ he added.

Previous winners of the renowned award include Nobel Laureate and American economist Joseph E. Stiglitz, Nobel laureate and Belarusian journalist, Svetlana Alexievich, and former United Nations General Secretary Kofi Annan.


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