Imphal: Lady auto driver Laibi Oinam who is also a street vendor was awarded a cash of Rs 1,10,000 for her service in ferrying a recovered Covid-19 patient from Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences, Imphal East to Kamjong district on the intervening night of May and June, which took eight hours.
Manipur chief minister N. Biren Singh handed over the cash to Laibi at the chief minister’s secretariat on Thursday.
Laibi told the chief minister the night she transport the recovered patient was dark and foggy, and the road was very bad. She was served with food at Kamjong and returned without sleep, she added.
“Hats off to this great lady Laibi Oinam, the auto driver. She truly exemplifies hard work and Service above Self,” Biren said.
The cash reward was sponsored by some entrepreneurs from Manipur along with Manipuri Diasporas from US, UK, Canada and Singapore as an encouragement to her for her ‘humane and heroic act and service’.
Laibi Oinam, 50 a resident of Pangei Bazaar, Imphal East, is a mother of two sons and is the sole breadwinner of the family as husband suffers from diabetes.
A documentary film based on her life entitled “Auto Driver” won many accolades including best social issue film in the non-feature category at the 63rd National Film Awards in 2015 and Best Short Documentary in the Audience Choice category at the 2017 Women’s Voices Now Film Festival.
Apart from this, a number of articles have been published about her in many national and local newspapers and journals for breaking the gender stereotypes and glass ceiling.
LDA chairman L. Susindro, chairman of Manipur Building and Other Construction Workers’ Welfare Board H. Dingo, MLA Th. Satyabrata, filmmaker Meena Longjam who directed the documentary film and sponsors of the cash incentive were present during the award presentation programme.