Some of India's greatest women sports stars, including Olympic medallists PV Sindhu and MC Mary Kom, and former India national women's football captain, Oinam Bembem Devi, were on Monday conferred with Padma awards for their exceptional service to the nation at ceremonies held at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. (More Sports News)
The face of women boxing in India, Mary Kom was honoured with the Padma Vibhushan, the second-highest civilian award, by President Ram Nath Kovind in the presence of Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah among others.
Kom is a six-time AIBA women's boxing champion.
President Kovind presents Padma Vibhushan to Smt Mangte Chungneijang Mary Kom for Sports. A six-time AIBA Women's Boxing Champion, Mary Kom is a renowned athlete and face of women boxing in India. pic.twitter.com/OppbZor5Qq— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) November 8, 2021
Sindhu, arguably India's most decorated badminton player, was awarded Padma Bhushan, India's third-highest civilian award, while Bembem was honoured with Padma Shri, the fourth-highest civilian award.
I am truly humbled and blessed to receive the Padma Bhushan award from our Hon'ble President of India Shri Ram Nath Kovind sir. Extremely grateful to the Government of India for this prestigious honour! ðÂÂÂÂÂÂ @rashtrapatibhvn pic.twitter.com/jLsdFzBVnv— Pvsindhu (@Pvsindhu1) November 8, 2021
President Kovind presents Padma Shri to Ms Oinam Bembem Devi for Sports. She is the former captain of the Indian women's football team and is also known as "Durga of Indian football". pic.twitter.com/0MZqzQaEwW— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) November 8, 2021
Captain of the Indian women's hockey team, Rani Rampal was among those who received the Padma Shri.
There were two Padma awards ceremonies for the years 2020 and 2021 held in the morning and evening. Among the awards given away were seven Padma Vibhushan, 16 Padma Bhushan and 122 Padma Shri awards for the years 2020 and 2021.
The Padma awards are given in three categories -- Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri -- and announced annually on the eve of Republic Day.
The Padma Vibhushan is awarded for exceptional and distinguished service, Padma Bhushan for distinguished service of high order and Padma Shri for distinguished service in any field.
Those awarded Padma Vibhushan also include former union ministers George Fernandes (posthumous), Arun Jaitley (posthumous), Sushma Swaraj (posthumous) and Pandit Chhannulal Mishra, Hindustani classical and semi-classical vocalist.