Kamla Calls Again: National Award for Anil Bheem

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By Prior Beharry

EXACTLY nine months after first making the call, Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar again asked for cultural icon Anil Bheem to be honoured with a National Award on Thursday evening.

Speaking at the Divali Nagar, Persad-Bissessar said, “I make that call again tonight. And I ask the NCIC and other groups for us to put forward the name on the other occasion (for National Awards).

“And I promise you if it is not done we will make it happen when we form the next government.”


Bheem passed away of cardiac arrest at his Curepe home in February at the age of 48.

After the funeral rites at his home, a celebration of his life took place at the Divali Nagar where Persad-Bissessar, who was among a battery of speakers, had made a call for Bheem to be honoured with a national award. That was on February 9.

At the National Awards on Republic Day, Bheem was not honoured.

On Thursday, Persad-Bissessar said, “I have always, over my many years in public life, tried to shine a light on unfair treatment, to stand up for what is right, and to promote unity, tolerance, and respect in our plural society. I have never promoted hate or intolerance, and I never will.


“We are all equal sons and daughters of this land, and the sun, that glorious luminary that rises in the East, shines for all of us, one nation under one flag.

“The legacy of light is the legacy of hope, of revealing things that need to be fixed, and of urging us into action.

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar at the Divali Nagar on Thursday

“So, I encourage all of you to proudly go out on Diwali night, prepare your deyas and then light those deyas. Light them up for this Divali.”

See related stories below:

Click here to read AZP News story on Anil Bheem’s funeral

Click here to see photos of Anil Bheem’s funeral

Bheem’s Spark Honoured: Kamla Calls for National Award




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