On 25th January 2019, the President of India –Ram Nath Kovind announced the awardees list of the prestigious Padma Awards. The Padma Shri list comprises of 113 names that include late Bollywood actor Kader Khan, actor Manoj Bajpayee, dancer and filmmaker Prabhudeva, former Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir, Bollywood musician and composer Shankar Mahadevan and many prominent personalities from across various fields. Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi took to his Twitter account to congratulate the Padma award recipients and also shared the entire list of the awardees. Apart from these, the list also includes south actor Mohanlal, Indian footballer Sunil Chhetri, former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan and late journalist Kuldip Nayar.
The recognition was long due for late actor Kader Khan, who breathed his last on December 31, 2018. In 2016, in a conversation with IANS, he opened up saying, “If the government feels that I have done good work, it will honour me. It’s people’s love that they are demanding it for me. It’s good that I did not get one." He, in fact, even took a dig at those who have got it in 2016, by saying, "... it’s good that they did not give me a Padma Shri. I have neither flattered anyone in my life, nor will I ever. I don’t want these awards if they have been given to people (in the industry) who got it this time. An award is a no big thing, but its importance lies in the people it has been conferred upon."
The Padma Awards are India’s highest civilian awards and are divided into three categories – Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri. The ‘Padma Vibhushan’ is presented for exceptional and distinguished service, ‘Padma Bhushan’ is awarded for a distinguished contribution of high structure and ‘Padma Shri’ is for distinguished persons, irrespective of the field. The Padma Awards are presented in various fields of activities, sports, arts, public affairs, science and engineering, medicine, literature, civil service, social work, trade and industry. A huge congratulations to all the awardees!