AGARTALA, April 14 (IANS): The first Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya National Integration Award for Social Service, instituted by the Tripura government, was conferred on renowned social activist and tribal leader Bikram Bahadur Jamatia on Friday.
The national integration award, along with other awards for music, literary, publication and folk song, were given away to the recipients on Friday evening at the valedictory function of the 12-day-long 36th edition of Agartala Book Fair.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government in Tripura had earlier this month announced the institution of two new awards -- Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya National Integration Award for Outstanding Performance in the Field of Social Service and the Kalikinkar Debbarma Award for Excellent Performance in Classical Music.
Eminent social activist Jamatia was the "Akraa" (priest) of "Jamatia Hoda", a centuries-old body which looks after the socio-economic and educational aspects of Jamatia tribe, one of the 19 tribes of the 1.1 million tribals in Tripura.
Jamatia, a retired Tripura government official, had once played a very courageous and significant role against the violent activities of four-and-a-half decades old terrorism in Tripura.