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Scots are honoured at prestigious awards

Two eminent Scots have been honoured at a prestigious awards ceremony.

Consultant eye surgeon Sadhu-Ram Gupta from Kilmacolm and Glasgow solicitor Deepak Bali were among the winners at the British Indian Awards, which took place in Birmingham on Friday night.

The event, which attracted more than 400 guests, celebrates the contribution made in the UK and abroad by British men and women of Indian heritage.

Dr Gupta, who spent most of his career at Inverclyde Royal in Greenock, rose from poverty in the back streets of Delhi to become an internationally-renowned surgeon.

He won the award for Best in Medical in recognition of his voluntary work among the world's poorest people.

During the past 20 years he has used his spare time to establish eye camps in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar and Ethiopia.

At these camps, often in the most inhospitable of places, he and a small team have performed cataract surgery on some of the world's most deprived people.

It is conservatively estimated that thanks to his efforts nearly 3000 people have had their sight restored.

Deepak Bali was for many years a relatively unknown immigration lawyer working quietly in his Glasgow office. But all that changed last September when he was asked to represent Swami Ramdevji, who had been detained by immigration officials at Heathrow.

The Swami, who has a worldwide following of 100 million people, arrived in the UK with the correct visa, but was denied entry.

Mr Bali was recognised for his contribution to Indian society in the UK and abroad.

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