Shilpa Shetty has been honoured by Britain with the Global Diversity Award for 2008. Racing driver Lewis Hamilton is the other winner.
Shilpa became famous throughout the UK last year when she was subjected to alleged bullying and racist treatment on the TV show Celebrity Big Brother. She won the hearts and minds of the audience with the dignity and maturity of her response and went on to win the competition by popular vote. Outrage at her treatment was so strong that the program was canceled for a year, only recently being relaunched.
The award will be presented this evening by British Foreign Minister, David Miliband and is hosted by the Next Steps Foundation.
Shilpa’s career has recently taken on a new strength with good roles in Life in A Metro and Apne – and also starring in the Bollywood musical, Miss Bollywood. Shilpa is known for her interest in matters of social concern, being an active campaigner in the Aids area and having a particular interest in the plight of caged tigers through her work with PETA. “These once dignified animals only leave their cages, which are barely larger than the size of their bodies, for a few minutes each day to be forced into the ring to perform tricks which make no sense and are upsetting to them,” she argues. “The best way to help animals suffering in circuses is to boycott the circus.”