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Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Nalini Nayak shortlisted for Nobel Peace Prize

When the Nobel Committee picks this year’s winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, chances are that one of the many Keralite woman shortlisted may walk away with it.

The names of nine Keralites, along with 82 others from various parts of the country, figure on a list of 1,000 nominees whose names have been jointly proposed for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize.

The 1000 Women for the Nobel Peace Prize Project was initiated by a member of the Swiss Parliament, Gabi Vermot. The list recognises and celebrates the contribution of women from all walks of life who are working for peace and justice in their communities. This is the first time that such a list with so many names will be forwarded to the Nobel Committee.

The nominees who hail from Kerala are CK Janu, Leelakumari Amma, Sister Elizabeth Edattukaran, Nalini Nayak, Dr Lakshmi Sahgal, Mallika Sarabhai, Mrinalini Sarbahai, T.K. Omana and Beena Sebastian.

Before Nalini Nayak stepped in, small fishworkers were among the most unorganised groups in Kerala. She helped them set up cooperatives and organise themselves into a registered trade union. She founded the Kerala chapter of the Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) and helped set up a program for community organization.

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