When Venky, Aamir, Rahman took centre stage
Nobel laureate of Indian origin Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, noted theatre personality Ebrahim Alkazi were on Wednesday conferred the Padma Vibhushan, the second highest civilian award by President Pratibha Patil in New Delhi.
Music maestro A R Rahman and Bollywood star Aamir Khan, classical vocalist Pandit Channulal Mishra and prominent hotelier Capt C P Krishnan Nair were among those honoured with the Padma Bhushan awards at a glittering ceremony at the Ashoka Hall of the Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi.
Photographs courtsey: Press Information Bureau
Image: President Pratibha Patil presenting Padma Vibhushan Award to Dr Venkatraman Ramakrishnan at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on Wednesday
President confers second-highest civilian award
Pratap Chandra Reddy, founder chairman of Apollo Hospitals, was also conferred the Padma Vibhushan.
The entire Ashoka Hall reverberated with applause as sportspersons Saina Nehwal and Virendra Sehwag walked up to the podium to receive their Padma Shri awards from the President.
Hockey national Ignace Tirkey, dhrupad exponent Ustad Faiyaz Wasifuddin Dagar, businesswoman Anu Aga, multi-lingual actress Arundhati Nag, former Central Bureau of Investigation director D R Karthikeyan, plant scientist Palpu Pushpangadan and eye surgeon Vikas Mahatme were among those who were awarded Padma Shri.
Image: President presenting Padma Bhushan Award to music maestro A R Rahman
Padma magic all around
Among the Padma Bhushan awardees this year are eminent neurosurgeon Satya Paul Agarwal and eminent cardiac surgeon Ramakant Panda, who performed 'beating heart' on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh last year.
Former Vice Chancellor of Goa University P R Dubhashi for civil service, Prof Tan Chung and Prof A J Paulraj received the award in literature and education and science and engineering categories respectively.
Planning Commission member Abhijit Sen and S K Bandyopadhyay received Padma Bhushan in the public affairs category.
Image: President presenting Padma Bhushan Bollywood star Aamir Khan
A mark of respect
In the trade and industry category Alluri Venkata Satyanarayana Raju, founder chairman of Nagarjuna Construction Company, J R Gangaramani, President of Al Fara'a Group in the UAE and Ravi Pillai of RP Group of industries received Padma Shri awards.
Padma Shri was also conferred on environmental crusader Baba Sewa Singh, vocalist Ulhas Kashalkar, scientist Vijayalakshmi Ravindranath, cardiologist K K Agarwal.
Former Union Minister Balasaheb Vikhe Patil got Padma Bhushan for social work.
Image: President presenting Padma Shri Award to cricket icon Virender Sehwag
Among others who received the Padma Bhushan were Arogyaseami Joseph Paulraj, Balgangadharnatha Swamiji, Jagdish Chandra Kapur, Kushal Pal Singh, Mohammad Amin, N C Satyanarayana, P K Warrier, Ram Kumar, Satya Paul Agarwal, Satyavrat Shastri and Shripaul Oswal.
Padma Shri was also conferred on Arvind Kumar, A T Meetei, B Ramana Rao, Bertha Gyndykes Dkhar, Carmel Berkson, Gul Bardhan, Hari Uppal, Jitendra Udhampuri, Lalzuia Colney, Laxmi Chand Gupta, M R Satyanarayana Rao, Maria Aurora Couto, Mukund Lath, Philip Augustine, Ponisseril Somasundaram, Rabindra Narain Singh, Rafael Irubieta Fernandez, Pandit Ragunath Panigrahi, Ram Dayal Munda, Sumitra Guha, and Surendra Dubey.
Image: President presenting Padma Shri Award to Badminton star Saina Nehwal
A memorable occasion
The nephew of Late Ramaranjan Mukherjee, 'Vivekananda Professor' at Ramkrishna Mission for Culture, Kolkata received the award on his behalf.
Noted scholar Govind Chandra Pande (Padma Shri) and poet Pandit Puttaraj Kavi Gavaigalavaru (Padma Bhushan) were not present to receive their respective awards.
Image: President with the Padma awardees