French ambassador Alexandre Ziegler on Wednesday conferred the Officier de l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur (Officer of the National Order of the Legion of Honour) on chairperson and editorial director of HT Media Ltd Shobhana Bhartia, who was also named this year on the Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women list.
Commending Mrs Bhartia during the investiture ceremony, Ziegler said, “This award expresses France’s recognition of your outstanding contribution and dedication to the world of journalism. As the Chairperson and Editorial Director of HT Media Ltd., you have implemented your vision for it as a modern media house integrating innovation and technology, geared towards its public. You have also demonstrated an exemplary engagement with social causes, as borne out by your efforts to abolish child marriage. You have also demonstrated an exemplary engagement with social causes, as borne out by the fact that you introduced The Child Marriage (Abolition) and Miscellaneous Provisions Bill, 2006, in Parliament. It is a great honour to confer on you the highest French distinction for your exceptional achievements.”
Accepting the distinction, Mrs Bhartia said, “It’s an honour to receive the Legion d’Honneur, which has been awarded to many distinguished people over the years. India and France share strong foundational values. The principles of justice, liberty, equality and fraternity form the basis of the French Republic and the Indian Constitution. I hope to contribute more to relations between the two countries in the coming years.”
The Legion d’Honneur, created in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, la Légion d’Honneur (“the Legion of Honour”) is the highest civilian award given by the French Republic for outstanding service to France, regardless of the nationality of the recipients.