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Chidambaram honoured


New Delhi, Dec 20 (IANS) Finance Minister P. Chidambaram was Thursday conferred with "best administrator in India" award for his contribution in pushing up the economic reforms and strengthening the internal security system when he held the home portfolio.

The award has been instituted by K. Karunakaran Foundation. Vice President Hamid Ansari presented the award at a function here.

"Chidambaram is not just an able administrator but also a distinguished parliamentarian, an eminent lawyer and an erudite political leader who has rendered commendable service to the nation in a long and illustrious public life," Ansari said while addressing the award ceremony.

Chidambaram is the second recipient of the award instituted in memory of the veteran Congress leader and four-time Chief Minister of Kerala, K. Karunakaran.

Last year, the then finance minister and now the president of India, Pranab Mukherjee was conferred the award.

Ansari said Chidambaram, who has held important portfolios in the federal government like finance, home and commerce, had won admiration for his vision, articulation, diligence and determination.

As finance minister, Chidambaram is credited with presenting a "dream budget" in late 1990s which gave a road map for economic reforms in India and lowered income and corporate tax rates.

"In the aftermath of the horrific Mumbai terror attacks in 2008, his tenure as home minister was marked by his dogged efforts at restructuring and modernising our national security apparatus, which did provide a sense of security and calm to a traumatised and angry population," Ansari said.

The vice president also lauded Chidambaram’s role in recent economic reforms.

"Even in his current tenure as finance minister, when the Indian economy is undergoing a difficult phase, the economic reforms that have been undertaken or are being initiated under his charge have been given a ‘thumbs up’ by the industry and economic experts," Ansari added.