Mumbai, Jan.20: Taj Hotel General Manager Karambir Singh Kang, who lost his wife and two children during the Nov 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, was presented the Economic Times Corporate Citizen of the Year award by PM Manmohan Singh here on Monday, Jan 19.
Walking on stage, shoulders squared but head bowed, Kang accepted the ward from Singh with a deep sense of humility, even as the tear-struck audience stood up to give him a rousing welcome. It may be recalled here that the Taj general manager, worked steadily through the night of Nov 26 escorting hotel guests to safety, not knowing that his family was stuck inside a room on the sixth floor of the hotel, trapped by a raging blaze.
Flanked by Taj group CEO Raymond Bickson and Hemant Oberoi in his chef whites, Kang received the ward on behalf of the hotel staff. The award was shared with the employees of The Oberoi and the Trident, for conducting themselves with incredible heroism and dignity in the four days that their hotels were under seige.
"This recognition is not just an honour for the staff of the Taj, but a recognition of the true spirit of India. For any employee of our hotel, no amount of training could have prepared us for what we went through during those fateful days.
They were all ordinary people, be it at the Taj, Trident, CST or Cama Hospital with extraordinary courage, who went beyond the call of duty. On behalf of my entire Taj family, I humbly accept this honour. Thank you," Kang said in his acceptance speech.