New Delhi: Former Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe and late singer SP Balasubrahmanyam have been honoured with India’s second-highest civilian award Padma Vibhushan this year, while former chief ministers Tarun Gogoi and Keshubhai Patel and former union minister Ram Vilas Paswan have been awarded Padma Bhushan posthumously.
Former Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan is also among the 10 Padma Bhushan awardees announced on Monday, while no one has been named for the Bharat Ratna — India’s highest civilian award.
On the eve of the Republic Day, the Union Home Ministry said that President Ram Nath Kovind has approved the conferment of 119 Padma awards —seven Padma Vibhushan, 10 Padma Bhushan and 102 Padma Shri.
The awardees include 29 women and a transgender theatre artist Matha B Manjamma Jogati.
There are 10 persons from the category of foreigners, Non-Resident Indians (NRI), Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) PIO and Overseas Citizen of India (OCI), while 16 have been awarded posthumously.
Sand artist Sudarshan Sahoo has been honoured with Padma Vibhushan. Former Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister Nripendra Misra, religious leader Kalbe Sadiq (posthumous), and social worker Tarlochan Singh have been awarded Padma Bhushan.
Former governor late Mridula Sinha and former union minister Bijoya Bijoya Chakravarty are among Padma Shri winners.
The seven Padma Vibhushan awardees include Belle Monappa Hegde, an eminent cardiologist from Karnataka, Indian-American physicist Narinder Singh Kapany (posthumous), Islamic scholar Maulana Wahiduddin Khan and archaeologist BB Lal.
Balasubrahmanyam has been given the award posthumously.
The Padma Bhushan awardees include Carnatic musician Krishnan Nair Shantakumari Chithra, Kannada poet and playwright Chandrashekhar Kambara and industrialist Rajnikant Devidas Shroff.
The 102 Padma Shri awardees include Col Quazi Sajjad Ali Zahir, a veteran of the Bangladesh liberation war, artist Gulfam Ahmed from Uttar Pradesh, basketball player P Anitha from Tamil Nadu and litterateur Sujit Chattopadhyay from West Bengal.
Among the other awardees are table tennis player Mouma Das, physician from Punjab Rattan Lal Mittal, academician from Jammu and Kashmir Chaman Lal Sapru (posthumous) and social worker from Assam Birubala Rabha