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Home / News / India /  Meet environmentalist Tulsi Gowda, who collected her Padma Shri award barefooted. Watch video
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President Ram Nath Kovind presented Padma awards to 119 eminent personalities at a ceremony in Rashtrapati Bhavan. Among the list of awardees was also a 72-year-old environmentalist, Tulsi Gowda. She was one of the 61 people who received the Padma Shri award from the President of India on Monday.

Gowda, who is from Honnali village in Karnataka, had planted more than 30,000 saplings. Gowda received the Padma Shri award in the Rashtrapati Bhavan barefoot. In the videos and pictures which have surfaced online, Gowda can be seen walking barefoot in the Durbar Hall of the Rashtrapati Bhavan stopped briefly to greet Prime Minister Narendra Modi, before going to receive the award from the President.

Gowda belongs to Halakki Tribal in Karnataka and is also known as the “Encyclopedia of Forest" due to her vast knowledge of diverse species of plants and herbs.

She was born to a poor family and lost her father when she was only 2-year-old. As a young child, she started working with her mother at a local nursery. Gowda never went to a school and was married when she was not even in her teens.

Gowda has actively contributed to protecting the environment and has planted thousands of trees. She joined the forest department as a temporary volunteer, where she was recognised for her dedication to nature preservation. She was later offered a permanent job in the department. She retired after 15 more years at the age of 70.

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