"I genuinely am still finding it hard to believe."
The UK New Year Honours List 2021 was published to commemorate the contributions made by people of all backgrounds across the UK, including British Asians to British society.
For the New Year Honours, a total of 1,239 people have been recognised for their contributions. 1,123 were selected at BEM, MBE and OBE level, 397 at BEM, 476 at MBE and 250 at OBE.
Of the total, 14,2% of successful candidates come from a BAME background, making the 2021 Honours List the most diverse ever.
There are 603 women on the list while 6.9% of candidates consider themselves to have a disability (under the Equality Act 2010) and 4% being identified as being LGBT+.
Celebrities, politicians and sports personalities have been recognised in the New Year Honours.
However, in what has been a challenging year, 65% of honourees are everyday heroes who have been recognised for their efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic.
As for the Asian contributions, the New Year Honours List commends the hard work and efforts by men and women with South Asian roots who have made a major impact on communities around the UK.
Titles bestowed upon the Asian individuals include Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE), Officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), and Medallist of the Order of the British Empire (BEM).
Popular British Asian actress Nina Wadia received an OBE for her services to entertainment and to charity.
The former Eastenders star got the news on her 52nd birthday but thought it was a prank. Reacting to the honour, Nina said:
“Now it’s sort of sunk in, I genuinely am still finding it hard to believe.
“I’m very excited of course, I feel it’s a huge, huge honour that this has come my way.
“It’s made my last 30 years of my career, all the hard times, feel worthwhile.”
Housing advisor Nadeem Khan received a BEM for helping people from his laptop in Lahore after getting stranded in Pakistan at the beginning of the pandemic.
He said: “I feel really humbled to have played a frontline role in helping people keep safe in what’s been a really difficult year.
“Having access to a safe home has never been more important.”
Another Asian recipient of a BEM was Samah Khalil who is the youngest person on the New Year Honours List 2021 at the age of 20.
She was recognised for her work as Youth Mayor of Oldham.
Others Asian recipients on the New Year Honours List 2021 include Manoj Varsani who was made an MBE for his work to help prevent PPE shortages for healthcare workers, Fayyaz Afzal OBE received a CBE for his services to the judiciary and to diversity and inclusion and Diljit Singh Rana was named an OBE for his services to business and to the economy in Northern Ireland.
British Asians who have been recognised in the New Year Honours List 2021 include:
Companions of the Order of Bath
- Malini Nebhrajani – Legal Director, Department for Health and Social Care Legal Advisers, Government Legal Department. For public service.
Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
- Fayyaz Afzal OBE – Circuit Judge, England and Wales. For services to the Judiciary and to Diversity and Inclusion.
- Professor Bashabi Fraser – For services to Education, to Culture and to Integration in Scotland.
- Dr Mina Golshan – Deputy Chief Inspector, Office for Nuclear Regulation. For services to Nuclear Regulation.
- Professor Usha Claire Goswami FBA – Professor of Cognitive Developmental Neuroscience, University of Cambridge. For services to Educational Research.
- Wasfi Kani OBE – Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Grange Park Opera. For services to Music.
- Preetha Ramachandran – Group Director, South East Universal Credit Operations, Department for Work and Pensions. For services to the Unemployed.
- Professor Raad Shakir – Professor of Neurology (Visiting), Imperial College London. For services to Global Neurology.
- Professor Sembukuttiarachilage Ravi Pradip Silva – Director, Advanced Technology Institute, University of Surrey. For services to Science, to Education and to Research.
Officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)
- Anwar Ali – Founder and Director, Upturn Enterprise Ltd. For services to Social Enterprise.
- Councillor Azhar Ali – Leader of Labour Group, Lancashire County Council. For services to the community in North West England.
- Professor Farah Naz Kausar Bhatti – Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon. For services to Diversity in the NHS in Wales.
- Tanjit Singh Dosanjh – Founder and Chief Executive Officer, The Prison Opticians Trust. For services to Optometry in Prisons and Reducing Re-Offending.
- Professor Mohan Jayantha Edirisinghe FREng – Bonfield Chair of Biomaterials, University College London. For services to Biomedical Engineering.
- Dipanwita Ganguli – Principal, Sutton College. For services to Adult Education in London.
- Fozia Tanvir Irfan – Chief Executive Officer, Bedfordshire and Luton Community Foundation and Trustee, Association of Charitable Foundations. For services to the community in Bedfordshire, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Professor Partha Sarathi Kar – Consultant and Endocrinologist, Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust. For services to People with Diabetes.
- Professor Suneetha Ramani Moonesinghe – Professor of Perioperative Medicine and Consultant Anaesthetist, University College London. For services to Anaesthesia, Perioperative and Critical Care.
- Lord Diljit Singh Rana MBE – Chairman, Andras House Ltd. For services to Business and to the Economy in Northern Ireland.
- Asiyah Ravat – Executive Principal, Star Academies. For services to Education in Birmingham.
- Nina Minoo Wadia – For services to Entertainment and to Charity.
- Gajan Lavan Wallooppillai – For services to Equality and to Community Cohesion.
- Adeela Warley – Chief Executive, CharityComms. For services to Charity Communications.
Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
- Professor Alka Surajprakash Ahuja – Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Royal College of Psychiatrists (Wales). For services to the NHS during Covid-19.
- Humza Arshad – Comedian and Writer. For services to Education.
- Rabinder Nath Bhanot JP – For services to Wellbeing and Community Action, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Dr Harnovdeep Singh Bharaj – Consultant, Diabetes and General Medicine, Bolton NHS Foundation Trust. For services to People with Diabetes in the South Asian Community.
- Dr Anand John Chitnis – General Practitioner, The Castle Practice, Birmingham. For services to the NHS, Mental Health and Disabilities.
- Avinash Dussaram – Members Services Officer, Parliamentary Digital Service. For services to Parliament, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Ismail Mohammed Gangat – Founder and Proprietor, Azhar Academy Girls’ School, Forest Gate. For services to Education in East London.
- Dr Roganie Govender – Consultant Clinical Academic Speech and Language Therapist. For services to Speech and Language Therapy.
- Anita Goyal – For services to Diversity and to Female Empowerment.
- Dr Mohammad Tayyab Haider – Medical Director, Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. For services to the NHS, particularly during the Covid-19 Response and to the community in Essex
- Mohammad Imran Hamid – For services to Youth Empowerment and Social Welfare Projects.
- Dr Amir Simon Hannan – General Practitioner, Haughton Thornley Medical Centre. For services to General Practice in Hyde and Haughton Green, Metropolitan Borough of Tameside.
- Mursal Hedayat – Founder, Chatterbox. For services to Social Enterprise, Technology and the Economy.
- Hobibul Hoque – Chief Inspector, Bedfordshire Police. For services to Policing and Community Cohesion.
- Syeda Islam – For services to the community in Battersea, Greater London particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Moinul Islam – Founder and Project Manager, Outta Skool North West. For services to Sport and Education in the community, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Shravan Jashvantrai Joshi – For services to Diversity and to the British Hindu community.
- Dr Shikandhini Kanagasundrem – Director, Infection Prevention and Control and Consultant Microbiologist, The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust. For services to Microbiology, infection Prevention and Control, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Harjinder Kaur Kandola – Chief Executive, Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust. For services to Mental Health, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Abdul Majid – For services to Integration in Glasgow and to Charity in Scotland and Abroad.
- Arpal Morzaria – Attendance and Wellbeing Champion, Risk and Intelligence Service, H.M. Revenue and Customs. For services to Staff Wellbeing.
- Ruchi Nanda – Lately Account Manager, Department for International Trade. For services to Trade, to Investment and to Business Support.
- Khairun Nisa – Foster Carer, Leeds City Council. For services to Fostering.
- Mohamed Hazrath Haleem Ossman – For services to the Sri Lankan Community in the UK.
- Satyesh Parmar – Consultant Surgeon, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham. For services to Oral and Maxillofacial Cancer Surgery.
- Bhaven Pathak – For services to Business and British Hinduism.
- Mohanned Saleem Udin Kauser Quazi – Team Leader, Office of the Regional Schools Commissioner, West Midlands. For services to Education.
- Vinaykant Ruparelia DL – For services to Local Enterprise, to Tourism and to the community in Portsoy, Banffshire.
- Niraj Kumar Sharma – Immigration Liaison Officer, Immigration Enforcement, Home Office. For public service.
- Sunita Ben Singal – Diversity and Equality Lead, National Employer and Partnership Team, Department for Work and Pensions. For services to Diversity and to Inclusion.
- Professor Hora Soltani-Karbaschi – Professor of Maternal and Infant Health, Sheffield Hallam University. For services to Higher Education and to Maternal and Infant Health.
- Sasi Srinivasan – Early Years Manager, London Borough of Brent. For services to Education.
- Dr Asha Thomson – Speciality Dentist in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Senior Clinical Leadership Fellow East Anglia NHS England and Senior Clinical Teacher in Oral Surgery, Kings College Hospital London. For services to the NHS, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Anjuu Trevedi – Head, Regional Business Engagement, University of Leicester. For services to Business Innovation and to the Economy in Leicestershire.
- Rajinder Tumber – Cyber Security Executive, Ernst and Young. For services to the Cyber Security Industry.
- Shahab Uddin – Director of Legal, British Olympic Association. For services to Sport during the Covid-19 Response.
- Manoj Varsani – Founder, SOS Supplies. For services to Protective Care during the Covid-19 Response.
- Haleema Yousaf – Team Leader, Fair Access and School Exclusions, Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council. For services to Children and Young People with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.
Medallists of the Order of the British Empire (BEM)
- Samira Ahmad – Assistant Scientific Officer, Animal and Plant Health Agency. For services to Animal Health during the Covid-19 Response and to the community in Woking, Surrey.
- Dr Azeem Alam – Co-Founder, BiteMedicine and Junior Doctor, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust. For services to Medical Education during Covid-19.
- Anand Bhatt – Co-founder, Aakash Odedra Company. For services to Dance and to the community in Leicester.
- Salma Bi. For services to Cricket and to Diversity in Sport.
- Swaran Chowdhary – For services to Kidney Research UK, Organ Donation and South Asian communities in Scotland.
- Imran Ahmed Chowdhury – For services to Community Cohesion in Northampton.
- Golam Mahbab Alam Chowdhury. Refugee Support Staff and Emergency Responder, British Red Cross. For services to Healthcare during the Covid-19 Response.
- Asha Rani Day – Nurse, Health Visitor and Clinical Team Leader; Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust. For services to the NHS and to Minority Ethnic Equality during the Covid-19 Response.
- Daljit Singh Grewal – For services to the community in West London, particularly during the Covid-19 Response.
- Maya Joshi – For services to the Vulnerable in Leicestershire.
- Steven Kapur – Founder, Apache Indian Music Academy. For services to Music and to Young People.
- Sanjay Jayenedra Kara – Trustee, BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha (Neasden Temple). For services to community cohesion and public and charitable service in the UK.
- Samah Khalil – Youth Mayor of Oldham. For services to Young People.
- Ziaul Khan – For services to the community in Sheffield.
- Nadeem Sadiq Khan – Charity Helpline Housing Adviser and Team Leader, Shelter. For services to the Homeless during the Covid-19 Response.
- Haroon Mahmood – Relief Manager, Wells Pharmacy, Darlaston. For services to the community in the West Midlands, particularly during Covid-19.
- Aakash Odedra – Co-founder, Aakash Odedra Company. For services to Dance and to the community in Leicester.
- Ayesha Pakravan-Ovey – Founder, The Plattery and Vital Meals. For services to charity and to Vulnerable People during the Covid-19 Response.
- Harilal Narandas Patel – For services to Community Cohesion in Cardiff.
- Khakan Munir Qureshi – Senior Independent Living Officer, Midland Heart. For services to LGBT Equality.
- Dr Aminur Khosru Rahman – Chair, Kent Area Committee, Institution of Mechanical Engineers. For services to Education.
- Syedur Rahman – For services to Charity in Leicester.
- Azizur Rahman – Foods Section Manager, Marks and Spencer. For services to the community in London during the Covid-19 Response.
- Mohammed Usman Rakq – Senior IT Assistant, Glasgow Caledonian University. For services to Education and to Students with Hearing Impairments.
- Balbir Seimar – For services to the Homeless and to the community in Walsall, West Midlands.
- Charandeep Singh – Founder, The Sikh Food Bank. For services to Charity during the Covid-19 Response.
These honorary titles are awarded to these individuals in recognition for their commitment to serve and help Britain in their areas of work and services. The Asian recipients of these awards have proved their specific dedication without a doubt to their contributions.
DESIblitz congratulates all of the honoraries on the New Year Honours List 2021!