On the occasion of the 72nd Republic Day, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami handed over medals to Pulivalam Government High School's English BT Teacher Tmt. P Mullai, Forest Veterinary Assistant Surgeon Dr A Prakash, Loco Pilot Thiru J Suresh and cab driver Thiru R. Pugazendiran.The recipients were handed over the medals in presence of Governor Banwarilal Purohit, Madras High Court Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and other dignitaries.
Tmt. P Mullai was conferred with Anna medal as she risked her life to save her students from an explosion, while the veterinary surgeon received the honour for rescuing an elephant that had plunged into a 60-feet deep well. Loco pilot Suresh was handed over Anna Medal as he saved his passengers by spotting boulders lying on the railway well in advance and the cab driver was given the medal for saving the life of an injured policeman.
Every year the government of Tamil Nadu presents Anna Medals for Gallantry to the government servants/ civilians for their acts of bravery. The award carries a cheque of Rs 1,00,000, a medal worth Rs 9,000 and a certificate.
English Teacher Tmt, P Mullai
On January 29, 2020, P Mullai, a teacher in Pulivalam Government High School in Sholinghur in Ranipet district, smelled the strong odour of LPG in the neighbourhood. Disregarding her personal safety, she guided her students to safety. “But her selflessness ended in misfortune as the LPG exploded in the neighbourhood, collapsing the house wall adjacent to the school, leaving her injured,” read her citation. She saved her 26 students, but had to be admitted to the hospital in a highly critical stage. However, now she has recovered.
Forest Veterinary Assistant Surgeon A Prakash
Forest Veterinary Assistant Surgeon A Prakash was involved in the rescue of an elephant that fell into a 60-feet deep well on November 19, 2020, and was actively involved in the rescue that lasted for over 18 hours. When the rescued elephant charged at the gathering of the people unexpectedly, Mr Prakash followed the animal and gave it an anaesthetic drug with his bare hands, after realising there was no time left for loading the tranquilliser gun.
Loco Pilot J Suresh
Loco Pilot J Suresh of Vaigai Express noticed his train was approaching boulders on the tracks due to a landslide on November 18, 2020. Despite inclement weather and poor visibility, he stopped the train immediately and thereby saved the lives of over 1,500 passengers on board the train.
Cab driver Thiru R. Pugazendiran
R Pugazendiran of The Nilgiris district saved the life of an injured policeman after a tree fell on the latter on August 5, 2020. Mr Pugazendiran “reached the spot quickly with his vehicle and rushed the injured police constable to the nearest hospital. The police constable was saved.”
Inspector of Police T. Magudeeswari of the Prohibition Enforcement Wing in St. Thomas Mount, Sub-Inspector of Police N. Selvaraju of the Central Investigation Unit in Salem, Head Constable S. Shunmuganathan of Srivilliputhur Taluk Police Station in Virudhunagar district and Head Constable S. Rajasekaran of Kilkodungalur Police Station in Tiruvannamalai district received the Gandhi Adigal Police Medal. The Gandhi Adigal Police Medal is awarded to personnel of the Tamil Nadu Police, who have undertaken outstanding work in curtailing illicit liquor. The Award carries a sum of ₹40,000.
Besides all this, the police stations in Salem Town, Tiruvannamalai Town and Kotturpuram in Chennai received the top three ranking stations across the State. Mr KA Abdul Jabbar from Coimbatore district received the Kottai Ameer Communal Harmony Award for 2021.