Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy wins global leadership pprize

Islamabad: Pakistan’s two-time Academy Award-winning film-maker, producer and women’s rights activist Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy has made headlines once again after being honoured with the prestigious Eliasson Global Leadership Prize 2018 for her work in documentary-making.

The Eliasson prize is an annual feature of the Tällberg Foundation that recognises services and achievements of persons with exceptional talent, strength, courage and passion; those who have left a lasting impression on society and individuals’ minds.

In order to recognise their commitment to peace, justice, excellence in scientific advancement and the empowerment of the marginalised communities and neglected segments of society, Tällberg Foundation announces the leadership awards every year in October.

Chinoy is the first Pakistani woman to receive the prize, chosen from among 825 nominees from 130 countries and dozens of different occupations, positions, and causes.

According to the citation, Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy has been selected for “her extraordinary leadership and work that is courageous, optimistic, dynamic, rooted in universal values and fundamentally global in reach, conception and impact.”

The jury members for this leadership prize belong to diverse, multi-cultural, multi-ethnic groups including writers, former ambassadors, CEOs of different companies, film-makers, artists and publishers, etc. They are respected in society for their uprightness and fair play.

The 2018 winners of Eliasson Global Leadership Prize also include Rafael Yuste, a leading neuroscientist and artificial intelligence researcher and Imam Omar Kobine Layama, a Central African Imam dedicated to promoting peace in the region.

Upon her selection for the award, Sharmeen Chinoy in a statement said, “I am honoured to receive the Eliasson Global Leadership Prize at a time when holding up a mirror to society comes with a heavy price. With fellow filmmakers being jailed and killed around the world for simply speaking the truth, we need to have the courage to persevere.”

Sharmeen’s two documentaries in 2012 and 2016 have earlier won her an Academy Award in the ‘Best Documentary’ category.

In 2012, she made history on winning the Academy Award for her documentary Saving Face at the 84th Annual Academy Awards; it was Pakistan’s first Oscar win.

In 2018, again at the 88th Academy Awards, she was the jury’s choice for her documentary A Girl in The River: The Price of Forgiveness.

Her documentaries highlight the plight of women who fall victim to honour-killing, physical and mental harassment, torture and intimidation in a male-dominated society.

Launched in 1981, Tällberg Foundation exists to explore the issues that are challenging — and changing — our societies.

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