Ms. Silverine Swer: Meghalaya’s first Padma Shri awardee, passed away
Meghalaya’s first Padma Shri awardee Ms. Silverine Swer (103) passed away due to illness. She received the Padma Shri Award from the then president R. Venkataraman in 1990.
About Ms. Silverine Swer
- Born: November 12, 1910 in Christian tribal family, Meghalaya.
- Fondly known as Kong Sil and was also the oldest voter from Meghalaya.
- Awards & Honors: Padmashree Award, Patogan Sangma Award for social service, Silver Elephant Medal of the Bharat Scout & Guides Award (by President of India Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed in 1976), Kaisar-i- Hind Medal, RG Buruah Smriti Rakhya Samiti, etc.
- Member of the Good Will Movement of the Moral Rearmament (MRA).
- First Khasi woman to become the Trainer and Adviser of the Girls Guide Movement – a movement that became her lifelong passion until her last days.
- Awarded Kaisar-i-Hind medal by the Assam government for her efficiency and integrity while handling the rationing system and for service to the Girl Guide movement in Assam.
- Saw four wars: the two World Wars, the Sino-Indian War and the Bangladesh Liberation War involving India.
- 1944-1949: Appointed as the Assistant Controller of Rationing during the World War II under Assam government.
- 1953 -1969: Chief Social Education Organizer in Arunachal Pradesh under erstwhile NEFA government for 15 years.
- Pioneering Principal of the Teacher Training Institute at Changlang Tirap district and retired from service in 1968.
- After retirement, she involved herself passionately with various women voluntary social welfare organizations and governing bodies of schools, colleges and co-operative societies.
- Important roles in Meghalaya taken by her: Chairman of the State Social Welfare Advisory Board, State Commissioner (Guides), Chairperson of the International Year for Women (1979), Member of NEHU’s Executive Council and Adviser of many more organizations.