New Delhi: L.K. Advani, Amitabh Bachchan, thespian Dilip Kumar and Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal were on Sunday chosen for this year’s Padma Vibhushan, the second highest civilian honour, as government gave a saffron touch honouring eminent people of various fields in this year’s list of Padma awardees.
Eminent lawyer K.K. Venugopal, D. Veerendra Heggade of the famous Dharmasthala Jain temple in Karnataka, eminent nuclear scientist M.R. Srinivasan and Aga Khan were also chosen for Padma Vibhushan.
Former chief election commissioner N. Gopalaswami, Microsoft chief Bill Gates and his wife Melinda Gates were selected for Padma Bhushan in the list of 104 people whose names were released on the eve of Republic day.
This list comprises nine Padma Vibhushan, 20 Padma Bhushan and 75 Padma Shri awardees. 17 of them were women and equal number were in the category of foreigners, NRIs, PIOs and four posthumous awardees.
Former Lok Sabha secretary general Subhash C. Kashyap, journalists Rajat Sharma and Swapan Dasgupta, eminent lawyer Harish Salve, cardiologist Ashok Seth, Indian-American mathematician Manjul Bhargava were also in the list of Padma Bhushan awardees.
Hindi journalist Ram Bahadur Rai has been chosen for Padma Shri. Hindu religious leader Jagadguru Ramanandacharya Swami Rambhadracharya (Padma Vibhushan), Swami Satyamitranand Giri (Padma Bhushan), both from Uttar Pradesh, Shivakumara Swami of Karnataka (Padma Bhushan) and Jagat Guru Amrta Suryananda Maha Raja of Portugal (Padma Shri) and former NCERT director J.S. Rajput (Padma Shri) also figure in Sunday’s list. Late Dawoodi Bohra leader Syedna Mohammad Burhanuddin has been chosen for Padma Shri.
Eminent Carnatic musician Sudha Ragunathan, wrestling coach Satpal, Assamese filmmaker Jahnu Barua, David Frawley (Vamadeva) of the United States, Saichiro Misumi of Japan, scientist S. Arunan find themselves in the Padma Bhushan list. Filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali, economist Bibek Debroy, lyricist Prasoon Joshi, who helped Bharatiya Janata Party’s Lok Sabha campaign, sports personality Saba Anjum, one of the founders of Infosys T.V. Mohandas Pai, badminton player P.V. Sindhu, woman cricketer Mithali Raj, Gujarati writer Tarak Mehta were given Padma Shri.
Cartoonist Pran Kumar Sharma, who was best known as the creator of Chacha Chaudhary has been selected for Padma Shri posthumously. Badminton star Saina Nehwal and boxer Vijender Singh, who sought Padma awards have been ignored. The award will be given at a function later in the year.