On the eve of Republic Day, the prestigious Padma Awards for 2024 were unveiled, honouring individuals who have made exceptional contributions to various fields. The awards, including Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan, and Padma Shri, stand among the nation’s highest civilian honours, symbolising excellence across diverse domains.
Instituted in 1954, the Padma Awards have become a symbol of recognition for those who have left an indelible mark on the country through their outstanding achievements. This year, the list of awardees includes 34 recipients of the Padma Shri, each lauded for their remarkable contributions to society.
Parbati Baruah: India’s first female elephant mahout, breaking stereotypes in a traditionally male-dominated field.
Jageshwar Yadav: Tribal welfare worker from Jashpur dedicated to uplifting marginalised Birhor & Pahadi Korwa people.
Chami Murmu: Tribal environmentalist and women empowerment champion from Seraikela Kharsawan.
Gurvinder Singh: Divyang social worker from Sirsa, working for the betterment of the homeless, destitute, women, orphans, and divyangjan.
Sathyanarayana Beleri: Rice farmer from Kasaragod, preserving over 650 traditional rice varieties and becoming a guardian of paddy crops.
Sangthankima: Social worker from Aizawl, running Mizoram’s largest orphanage ‘Thutak Nunpuitu Team.’
Hemchand Manjhi: Traditional medicinal practitioner from Narayanpur, providing affordable healthcare for over five decades.
Dukhu Majhi: Tribal environmentalist from Sindri village, Purulia.
K Chellammal: Organic farmer from South Andaman, successfully developing a 10-acre organic farm.
Yanung Jamoh Lego: Herbal medicine expert from East Siang, providing medical care to over 10,000 patients.
Somanna: Tribal welfare worker from Mysuru, tirelessly working for the upliftment of Jenu Kuruba tribe for over four decades.
Sarbeswar Basumatary: Tribal farmer from Chirang, adopting mixed integrated farming and cultivating various crops.
Prema Dhanraj: Plastic (reconstructive) surgeon & social worker dedicated to the care and rehabilitation of burn victims.
Uday Vishwanath Deshpande: International Mallakhamb coach, revitalising and popularising the sport globally.
Yazdi Maneksha Italia: Renowned microbiologist, pioneering India’s inaugural Sickle Cell Anemia Control Program.
Shanti Devi Paswan & Shivan Paswan: Globally recognised Godna painters from the Dusadh community.
Ratan Kahar: Renowned Bhadu folk singer from Birbhum, devoted to folk music for over 60 years.
Ashok Kumar Biswas: Prolific Tikuli painter credited for reviving Mauryan era art forms.
Balakrishnan Sadanam Puthiya Veetil: Distinguished Kalluvazhi Kathakali Dancer with a career spanning over 60 years.
Uma Maheshwari D: First female Harikatha Exponent, showcasing skill in Sanskrit recitation.
Gopinath Swain: Krishna Leela Singer from Ganjam, dedicated to preserving and promoting the tradition.
Smriti Rekha Chakma: Chakma Loinloom Shawl Weaver from Tripura, promoting natural dyes.
Omprakash Sharma: Mach Theatre Artist promoting the 200-year-old traditional dance drama of the Malwa region.
Narayanan EP: Veteran Theyyam Folk Dancer from Kannur, mastering dance, costume designing, and face painting.
Bhagabat Padhan: Exponent of Sabda Nrutya folk dance from Bargarh, taking the dance form beyond temples.
Sanatan Rudra Pal: Distinguished sculptor preserving the traditional art form, specializing in crafting Sabeki Durga idols.
Badrappan M: Exponent of Valli Oyil Kummi Folk Dance from Coimbatore, depicting stories of deities.
Jordan Lepcha: Bamboo Craftsman from Mangan, nurturing the cultural heritage of the Lepcha tribe.
Machihan Sasa: Longpi potter from Ukhrul preserving ancient Manipuri traditional pottery.
Gaddam Sammaiah: Eminent Chindu Yakshaganam theatre artist from Jangaon, performing for over five decades.
Jankilal: Behrupiya artist from Bhilwara, captivating global audiences for over six decades.
Dasari Kondappa: Third-generation Burra Veena player from Damaragidda village, preserving the art form.
Babu Ram Yadav: Brass Marori craftsperson creating intricate brass artifacts using traditional crafting techniques.
The Padma Awards acknowledge these remarkable individuals, celebrating their dedication and outstanding contributions across various domains.