ASHFAQ SYED, Rolling Meadows, IL – iCAN finale night was a dazzling affair as the crème-de-la-crème of Chicagoland added to the glamour quotient and made it a memorable evening on March 18th 2017, The event started with red carpet welcome for all the iCAN nominees. The evening celebrated the achievements of real community heroes with much fanfare and spirit. The show saw some of the most prolific personalities from Chicago’s Indian American Political, Social, Business and Entertainment community walk in along with 200 Plus Award nominees. Amidst fabulous performances, entertainment and glamour, iCAN honored the contributions of these community heroes by giving away its 1st iCAN Trophies to the most deserving social workers, community leaders, and performers across various categories.
With about 700 nominations in various categories and over 100,000 votes, the event had all the trappings of the world famous Academy Awards. The electrifying performance of 150 artists was an icing on the cake. The presence of the 40 generous sponsors was a great morale booster for all those who were associated with the conceptualization and execution of the whole event.
Neeta Bhushan, Hon’ble Consul General of India in Chicago, who was the Chief Guest at the event, had great appreciation for the high profile event which, she said, reminded her of the Oscars!!!! “It’s a moment of great pride to bring the community leaders from different walks of life under one roof and to recognize their spectacular services to the community in a grand function”, she said.
The event, which was a star-studded affair, had all the looks of the world famous Academy Awards. The evening had it all from the Red carpet to the interviews of the top listed nominees, with a special social hour to interact with gorgeous people all around surrounded by yummy appetizers to start and then the show began! Many nominees were heard saying that they felt like a STAR! Jassi Parmar and Mohan Rawat, the very versatile and highly talented EMCEE’s, made the evening a memorable experience for the audience.
The awards ceremony started with presenting Lifetime Achievement Award to Dr. Bharat Barai-Panna, who is a very eminent Indian Community Leader and recipient of President award. Dr. Deepak Kant Vyas, Chairman & CEO of Redberri Corporation was awarded with Special Jury Award. Harold D’Souza was awarded with iCAN Humanitarian Services Award. Pride of Community Award was awarded to Sonal Rawal. The winner of the Best Community Promoter Award was presented to Dr. Uma Katiki. The awards night continued with Best Restaurant Award – and the winner for the award was Cuisine of India-Rahul Sehgal. Best Chef award was awarded to Chef Raghu Singh from India House. Community Health and Fitness award was awarded to Vidya Nahar. iCAN Friend of India was Mayor Bill McLeod from Hoffman Estates, He said he is very proud and humbled to receive this award on behalf of the people of Hoffman Estates.
Lifetime Achievement Award 2 for Outstanding Humanitarian Service was presented to Satnam Singh Aulakh. iCAN Jury Award 2 was awarded to Ami Patel. Best Entrepreneur Female was awarded to Dr. Anuja Gupta, Fashion Icon Female was awarded to Aishwarya Sharma. iCAN Jury Award 2 for Outstanding Community Service was presented to Hemangini Shastri, iCAN Youth Achiever Award was awarded to Saloni and Savani Nagarkar sisters that teach kids about coding. Youth Icon Award was won by Suhanee Patel. Student of the Year Award winner was Nipun Dubey iCAN Jury Award 3, Young Achiever award was presented to Roni Akurati.
Best Singer Male was Mandeep Singh Saini, Best Singer Female was Nipa Shah, Best Volunteer award winner was Rajeev Bharel, and Lifetime Achievement Award for Outstanding Senior Service was Haribhai Patel. Best Dancer Female was Kajol Topi-wala, Best Choreographer was Sweta Bhagwakar, Best Entrepreneur Male was Rahul Wahi, Best Innovator was Anil Oroskar. Lifetime Achievement Award 4 for Outstanding Community Service was Jayantilal Thakkar. Best Performing Artist was awarded to Ashley Singh, Most Emerging Personality winner was Natasha Trikha. Fashion Icon Male was Syed Hussaini. Most Humble Person was Swapna Pula. Social Media King winner was Noman Khan, Social Media Queen was Farah Khan, Best wife Biwi No 1 winner was Farhana Bukhari, Best Couple Jodi No 1 winner was Puneet and Sim Sabarwal. Best Show Promoter Group was SAHIL and LA TAN, Best Dance Group/ Academy was Kalashree Dance Academy. Best Community Leader was awarded to Moon Khan. Best Community Organization was Blind Foundation for India. iCAN Jury Award for Best Community volunteer Organization was Sant Nirankari Mission, Chicago.
The iCAN Awards Night was launched in association with Star Plus & Life OK, 2 of the leading TV channels along with 40+ local sponsors. The event felicitated people from the Chicagoland’s Indian Community, who have done a remarkable job in their field and have served as an inspiration to others. A total of 38 awards were presented in the field of dance, music, community, health, performing arts et al. The event was lit with vibrant performers, a total of 108 to be exact. “I have been to a lot of community events, but have never witnessed an award show of this magnitude”, opined the audience unanimously.