Sydney’s Dr Asha Chand conferred ‘Nav Rattan of India’ award

Dr Asha Chand has been awarded the Nav Rattan (Nine Jewels) of India award on the eve of the country’s Republic Day (January 26, 2023) celebrations.

Every year, this award is given to nine Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) to honour their work in making a difference to the world.

Dr Chand is presently Associate Dean International in the School of Humanities and Communication Arts at the University of Western Sydney (UWS).

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She told The Australia Today:

“My recognition was for journalism, education, service to community and the diaspora.”

Dr Asha Chand (Image: Supplied)

She adds:

“I pay tribute to the hundreds of students whom I have had the opportunity to share my wisdom with as a teacher, and who are now working in local communities, for the NGOs, governments, corporate world, and as journalists and influencers in Australia and across the globe, carrying the baton of change for a better world.”

Dr Chand, originally from Fiji, began her career as a journalist for Fiji Sun and The Fiji Times. She migrated to Australia in 1998 and joined Western Sydney University’s journalism program in 2003. 

She has more than 35 years of combined industry experience in academia, journalism and newsroom management, and international relationship management in the higher education sector.

She says:

“Western Sydney University gave me a chance when I arrived in Sydney, Australia, with a Permanent Residency (status) 25 years ago. I took that opportunity to prove my capabilities as a journalist, and later worked towards developing my skills as an educator. The abundance of UNLIMITED at WSU has kept me growing and learning.”

In 2018, she was recognised for her journalism and research at the House of Commons in London with the Mahatma Gandhi Pravasi Samman award. This was followed in 2019 by Hind Rattan (Jewel of India) award on the eve of India’s Republic Day in Delhi.

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Listen to Dr Asha Chand’s exclusive conversation with Dr Amit Sarwal.