New Delhi | January 11, 2023: The 13th edition of CNN-News18 Indian of the Year 2023 awards took place in New Delhi on Wednesday. The biggest awards platform of news television honoured Bollywood’s King Shah Rukh Khan with the prestigious Indian of the Year award.
In his moving acceptance speech, SRK opened up about his life and career like never before. He touched upon several subjects in his almost 10-minute long speech, which included his flops before he took a break, his family’s struggles and his successful 2023. He then said that he wanted to make a ‘brash’ statement by saying he doesn’t only feel like the Indian of the Year 2023 but the Indian of all Years.
CNN-News18 Indian of the Year recognises exceptional contributions of remarkable individuals across seven categories — Business, Entertainment, Sports, Youth Icon, Rising Sports Star, Social Change, and Climate Warriors.
While Shah Rukh Khan was crowned as the CNN-News18 Indian of the Year 2023, filmmaker Mani Ratnam was named CNN-News18 Indian of the Year in the Entertainment category.
Karnataka’s first transgender doctor and actor Trinetra Haldar was honoured with the Youth Icon of the Year award (Jury), while music composer and singer Anirudh Ravichander was awarded the Youth Icon (Popular) title at CNN-News18 Indian of the Year 2023.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) was honoured with the Indian of the Year 2023 award for outstanding achievement. The award recognised the remarkable contributions made by ISRO in pushing the boundaries of space exploration.
Neeraj Chopra clinched the Indian of the Year award in the Sports category in recognition of his remarkable achievements and significant contribution to Indian sports.
Chess Grandmaster R Praggnanandhaa was named Rising Sports Star at CNN-News18 Indian of the Year 2023.
In the Climate Warriors category, Arun Krishnamurthy and Saalumarada Thimmakka won the award. Arun Krishnamurthy is the founder of the Environmentalist Foundation of India (EFI), which has restored 460 waterbodies across 18 states. Padma Shri award recipient Saalumarada Thimmakka is a 112-year-old climate warrior from Karnataka’s Tumkur district and is known as the “Mother of Trees” for planting over 8,000 trees.
Ravi Kannan, a distinguished oncologist, was named the CNN-News18 Indian of the Year 2023 in the Social Change category. His commitment to people-centric and pro-poor healthcare has revolutionised cancer treatment in Assam.
State Bank of India (SBI) chairman Dinesh Khara won the prestigious Indian of the Year 2023 award in the business category. Khara joined SBI as a probationary officer in 1984 and has risen through the ranks over the years at India’s largest public sector lender.
The Heroes of Uttarkashi garnered a special recognition at the awards ceremony. Union Minister Jitendra Singh presented the award to the heroes, who included National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) Director General (DG) Atul Karwal, rat miners Munna and Wakil, along with foreman Gabbar Singh Negi and his colleague Saba Ahmed. The rat hole miners garnered nationwide acclaim for their pivotal role in the successful rescue effort in the Silkyara tunnel.
‘CNN-News18 Indian of the Year’ has a rich legacy of honouring exceptional individuals across various fields. A distinctive feature of this year’s event was the blend of expert judgment and public voting, where 50% of the decision-making power lies with the discerning audience, and the remaining 50% is entrusted to a distinguished panel of judges.
Over the years, CNN-News18 Indian of the Year award recipients have included personalities such as Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Olympic gold medallist Neeraj Chopra, cricket star Virat Kohli, the Indian women’s cricket team, NGO Stop Acid Attacks, Chess Grandmaster Vishwanathan Anand, music legend AR Rahman, former PM Manmohan Singh, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi, star boxer MC Mary Kom, actress Deepika Padukone and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, among others.