Cllr Dr. Neeraj Patil (Kannada: ಡಾ. ನೀರಜ್ ಪಾಟೀಲ್), a Kannadiga, and NRI from Karnataka was the First Mayor of Asian origin in the London Borough of Lambeth from 2010-2011.
He is a consultant in Accident and Emergency Medicine who completed his fellowship at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and was first elected as a Labour Councillor for the Larkhall ward in 2006 and re-elected in 2010. He served as a Consultant in Emergency Medicine at Worthing Hospital and was an active member of KWASH campaign to save the Emergency services at Worthing General Hospital. He has been elected for the British Labour Party. The important event during his mayoralty was to receive Pope Benedict the XVI during his official visit to London on 18 Sept, 2010. This was the first papal visit to the London Borough of Lambeth.
Dr. Patil is from the Indian state of Karnataka. In 2008 he was awarded the "Rajyotsava Award" by the Government of Karnataka for promoting Accountable Democracy in India. Dr. Patil single handedly and successfully got the statue of the 12th century philosopher and founder of Indian Democracy, Lord Basavanna installed at the Albert Embankment Gardens in the London Borough of Lambeth with the support of London-based Pakistani-Muslim community and British Indian community of, South London. On 24 March 2015 The Hon Prime Minister of India Sri Narendra Modi invited him to his official residence to congratulate him for his efforts in securing planning permission from the British Government for erecting the statue of Basaveshwara along the bank of river Thames in the back drop of British Parliament.He unveiled the statue of Basaveshwara on the 14th of November 2015.
Dr. Neeraj Patil has also spoken at the 2nd Kannada Vishwa Sammelana held on 11 Mar, 2011 at Belagavi, Karnataka and mesmerized the audience by his famous quote " You can take Indians out of India but you cannot take India out of Indians, You can take Kannadigas out of Karnataka but you cannot take Kannada and Karnataka out of the heart of Kannadigas
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