Youth Icon Awards Top 5: Background

Our Thoughts generate our actions, and our actions eventually become the reality that we live out. This must’ve surely been the exercise that got these Icons to where they are at right now. They’ve all grown into individuals with truly amazing foresight and inspiration to many others who look up to them as wondrous achievers.

These Icons shall be seen felicitated as unsung heroes whose positive social change have had an overwhelming effect on the youth of today. Its time that their stories are known and told for they are the icons that will lead the next generation of our state. Now, on the 2nd of October 2012, Avenues will present to us the very first  AVENUES YOUTH ICON AWARDS 2012.

Below is a preview and some background information on the Icons.



Ladsharai, Ri-Bhoi District, Meghalaya

Innovator, Motor Sports Enthusiast, Daredevil turned Entrepreneur

Promoter, Thrills Fun Park

To Vote, SMS: ICON EUGENE NIANGTI to 9774 21 21 61 (Lines close at midnight, 1st October 2012)

The Innovator: Eugene Niangti, is built from scratch. His passion for motorsports and motorbikes, turned into an entrepreneurial pursuit when he started his own workshop for motorbike modifications and repairs in 1998. As a Salesman for Tata Motors, Eugene worked his way door-to-door earning commissions on sales till he quit in 2002 to build Shillong’s first Go-Karting Track- Speedway Park at Laitkor. Eugene‘s pioneering spirit ensured the Park was an immediate success with the local community. He eventually shifted the park to its current location at Ladsharai, Ri-Bhoi District in 2004, where it continues to address over 10,000 visitors a year! The park was re-christened Thrills Fun Park

and is a great pull for families with Go-Karting, Water Slides, a Toy Train, a Swimming Pool and a Guest House with a coffee shop to boot. Eugene has personally constructed each of the Go-Karting machines at Thrills Park and has to date modified over 200 motorbikes for friends, and clients. He is also the Founding President of the Motorsports Club of Meghalaya, and is actively involved in Road Safety campaigns and Motorsport Events in Meghalaya. An award winning Rally and Moto-Cross competitor, Eugene continues to push his limits in rallies across the North East and the country.


Shillong, East Khasi Hills District, Meghalaya

Entrepreneur, Hotelier, Sports Advocate, Ambassador for Tourism

Managing Director, Centre Point Group Enterprises / Gen. Sec., Lajong Football Club

To Vote, SMS: ICON Larsing Ming Sawyan to 9774 21 21 61 (Lines close at midnight, 1st October 2012)

The Entrepreneur: At just 21, Ming took a family legacy built on hard work, and transformed it into a force to reckon with. A trailblazing entrepreneur who has contributed immensely to the fields of Hospitality, Sports, Music and Entertainment in Meghalaya, Ming has worked tirelessly, fostering a constructive environment for youth. His business interests have placed Shillong on the national hospitality map with boutique hotels, the region’s first resto-lounge and a string of home spun cafés. His entertainment division- Centre Point Entertainment Network, has earned the city the enviable reputation of being the country’s rock capital, with sell-out international concerts and acts with bands like Michael Learns to Rock and The Scorpions. As the founding Vice-President of the Meghalaya Tourism Development Forum, and an active promoter of the annual Shillong Autumn Festival, Ming genuinely believes in the potential impact of Tourism on the Sate Economy and Unemployment. His business group currently employs over 500 people.

Over the last decade, Ming’s involvement with the North East’s most successful sports club – Shillong Lajong Football Club, has taken state football to the nationals, breaking in to the exclusive I-League 1 st Division that puts the spotlight on just 14 of the country’s most competitive teams. As General Secretary of the Club, Ming’s business savvy and dynamic leadership has brought in new allies, national and international, as he strives to build a world class football club that allows the world to see, that the North East has indeed, arrived.



Shillong, East Khasi Hills District, Meghalaya

Community Hero, Youth Leader, Peace Enforcer

President, BAM (Bouncers’ Association of Meghalaya / President, Youth Congress, East Shillong /
Secretary, Seng Samla Malki

To Vote, SMS: ICON Junestar Kharbuli to 9774 21 21 61 (Lines close at midnight, 1st October 2012)

The Youth Leader: Junestar is a leader in the making and a hero to his people. Humble, down-to-earth and enterprising, he has never shirked the responsibilities assigned to him in the many roles he plays. Elected to every office he occupies by public opinion and popular votes, Junestar started his career as the Sports Secretary of the FKJGP’s Malki Circle in 1999, a post he recently vacated when he was elected President of the Youth Congress, Shillong East. He enjoys incredible local support from the families and youth of his community who ensured that he was voted in as the General Secretary of the Seng Samla Malki earlier this year, cementing his role as a youth leader.

Junestar genuinely aspires to create employment opportunities that engage youth in constructive pursuits. As President and Founder of the Bouncer’s Association of Meghalaya, he has pioneered a niche space in the service sector for organized, accountable event security. Formed by a group of fellow sportsmen on a bedrock of discipline, humility and efficiency in 2007, BAM has quickly become the preferred partner for peace enforcement and security at every major event hosted in Shillong and employs over 100 local lads. An accomplished Arm Wrestler, Junestar has competed nationally from 2003 and coached aspiring athletes to follow in his footsteps. The gym in his home is a testament to his
belief that nothing substitutes the merits of discipline and decent hard work.


Sohra, East Khasi Hills District, Meghalaya

Activist, Advocate for People’s Rights, Grassroot Social Worker

Facilitator, Nongpriang Self Help Group, Sohra / Member, Khatar Shnong Social Organisation, Sohra / RTI
Activisit / Active Representative for Peoples’ Rights, Sohra / Village Leader, Laitmawsaw

To Vote, SMS: ICON Lhai Sing Khongshei to 9774 21 21 61 (Lines close at midnight, 1st October 2012)

The Social Worker: Lhai Sing Khongshei is a beacon of hope for the villages and communities of Sohra. As an intermediary between villagers and the government, Lhai keeps a watchful eye over matters as diverse as the allocation of rashans and essential commodities by government, to the utilization of funds assigned towards Community Projects. As a young boy, Lhai was fascinated by Village Meetings and participated in Dorbar meetings, imbibing the spirit of local administration. As a young man, he would attend workshops and seminars on leadership and community development and return to the villages to impart the lessons learnt, through meetings with young adults and community members. He
was appointed Assistant Secretary of the Khatar Shnong Social Organisation in 1991 and helped form the Nongpriang Self Help Group in 1997. An active promoter and facilitator for employment and youth empowerment in Sohra’s villages, Lhai spends his days teaching young adults to be self sufficient and independent, through the Nongpriang group’s Handicrafts co-operative society. Widely acknowledged as a “problem solver” for disputes and village issues, Lhai finds himself travelling frequently between Sohra and Shillong, facilitating transactions and connecting people. Making ends meet is the least of his struggles.

Lhai Sing’s story isn’t one of great wealth or recognition, but an extraordinary tale of an unsung hero, selflessly committed to the well being of those around him. His reward? Respect, Dignity and the Love of his people – the things money, just can’t buy.


Tura, Garo Hills, Meghalaya

Entrepreneur, Orator par Excellence, Dynamic Politician

Leader of the Opposition, Govt of Meghalaya / Founder, SS Netcom Pvt Ltd, Shillong / Treasurer, PA
Sangma Foundation

To Vote, SMS: ICON Conrad Sangma to 9774 21 21 61 (Lines close at midnight, 1st October 2012)

Intelligent, Charming and Articulate, Conrad Sangma is already a role model for young adults across Meghalaya. He is certainly not your regular politician! Armed with a degree in Business Administration from the Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania, Conrad could have easily chosen a different path. Fortunately, this son of the Garo Hills chose to come home. His sharp business intellect helped him spot an opportunity in the Internet Services space in 1999, when he founded the North East’s pioneering IT Solutions company and internet service provider – SS Netcom Pvt. Ltd. Conrad led the group through infancy, transforming the business into an IT and ITES empire that currently employs over 10,000 people in the region. His reputation for stirring speeches precedes him – Conrad is a crowd
puller at events that feature discussions on subjects as diverse as Youth Development and International Trade.

For a family that lives and breathes Politics, Conrad’s achievements are enviable. He was elected to the State Legislatve Assembly in 2008, from the Selsella-50 MLA constituency, and steered the Finance, Power, Tourism, IT and General Administration departments of the Governement of Meghalaya as a Cabinet Minister. All this, when he was just 30. He is currently the Leader of the Opposition, and a Political Icon in the making.

Photography: Native Eyes
Creatives: COGNET
Content Copyright: AVENUES

Chameleon Press Staff

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