The Padma Bhushan is the third-highest civilian award of the Republic of India.[1] Instituted on 2 January 1954, the award is given for "distinguished service of a high order", without distinction of race, occupation, position, or sex.[2] The recipients receive a Sanad, a certificate signed by the President of India and a circular-shaped medallion with no monetary association. The recipients are announced every year on Republic Day (26 January) and registered in The Gazette of India—a publication used for official government notices and released weekly by the Department of Publication, under the Ministry of Urban Development.[3] The conferral of the award is not considered official without its publication in the Gazette. The name of recipient, whose award have been revoked or restored, both of which require the authority of the President, is archived and they are required to surrender their medal when their name is struck from the register;[4] none of the conferments of Padma Bhushan during 1990–1999 have been revoked or restored. The recommendations are received from all the state and the union territory governments, as well as from Ministries of the Government of India, the Bharat Ratna and the Padma Vibhushan awardees, the Institutes of Excellence, the Ministers, the Chief Ministers and the Governors of State, and the Members of Parliament including private individuals.[3]

When instituted in 1954, the Padma Bhushan was classified as "Dusra Warg" (Class II) under the three-tier Padma Vibhushan awards, which were preceded by the Bharat Ratna in hierarchy. On 15 January 1955, the Padma Vibhushan was reclassified into three different awards as the Padma Vibhushan, the Padma Bhushan and the Padma Shri.[3] The criteria included "distinguished service of a high order in any field including service rendered by Government servants", but excluded those working with the public sector undertakings with the exception of doctors and scientists. The 1954 statutes did not allow posthumous awards; this was subsequently modified in the January 1955 statute.[4] The design was also changed to the form that is currently in use; it portrays a circular-shaped toned bronze medallion 1 34 inches (44 mm) in diameter and 18 inch (3.2 mm) thick. The centrally placed pattern made of outer lines of a square of 1 316 inches (30 mm) side is embossed with a knob carved within each of the outer angles of the pattern. A raised circular space of diameter 1 116 inches (27 mm) is placed at the centre of the decoration. A centrally located lotus flower is embossed on the obverse side of the medal and the text "Padma" is placed above and the text "Bhushan" is placed below the lotus written in Devanagari script. The State Emblem of India is displayed in the centre of the reverse side, together with the national motto of India, "Satyameva Jayate" (Truth alone triumphs) in Devanagari script, which is inscribed on the lower edge. The rim, the edges and all embossing on either side is of standard gold with the text "Padma Bhushan" of gold gilt. The medal is suspended by a pink riband 1 14 inches (32 mm) in width with a broad white stripe in the middle.[3][4] It is ranked fifth in the order of precedence of wearing of medals and decorations of the Indian civilian and military awards.[a]

In the 1990s, a total of 113 people were conferred with the award. Twenty-four awards were presented in both 1990 and 1991, followed by thirty-three in 1992. In February 1992, a writ petition was filed in the Kerala High Court questioning whether the civilian awards presented the Government of India were "titles" as per the Article 18 (1) of the Constitution of India.[6] The subject constitutional article states that "no title, not being a military or academic distinction, shall be conferred by the State".[7] Similar petition was also filed in August 1992 in the Indore Bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court and a notice was issued on 25 August that led to provisional suspension of all civilian awards.[8][9] A Special Divisional Bench of the Supreme Court of India was set up with a panel of five judges that delivered the verdict on 15 December 1995 that the "Bharat Ratna and Padma awards are not titles within Article 18 of the Constitution of India".[8][10] Later in 1998 when the presentation of the awards resumed, eighteen recipients received the award followed by fourteen in 1999. The Padma Bhushan in the 1990s was also conferred upon five foreign recipients – two from the United Kingdom and one each from Japan, New Zealand, and the United States. Individuals from ten fields were honoured that included twenty-six artists, twenty-three from literature and education, eighteen from science and engineering, fifteen from medicine, eleven from public affairs, ten from social work, three sportspersons, three from trade and industry, and two from civil services and other fields each.[11]

Journalist Nikhil Chakravarty declined the award in 1990 so as to "not be identified with the establishment".[12] Historian Romila Thapar declined to accept the award in 1992, and later again in 2005, stating that she would accept awards only "from academic institutions or those associated with my professional work".[12] Similar to Chakravarty, journalist and civil servant K. Subrahmanyam also refused the honour citing that "bureaucrats and journalists should not accept any award from the government because they are more liable to be favoured."[12]


An image of Rajanikant Arole.
A recipient of the Ramon Magsaysay Award, social worker Rajanikant Arole was the founder president of Maharashtra Social Forum, a popular NGO network in the state.[13] He was awarded with the Padma Bhushan in 1990.
An image of P.L. Deshpandey.
Awarded in 1990, Purushottam Laxman Deshpande was a marathi theatre personality and actor, acting in twenty five films. He has been the President of both the Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Sammelan and Natya Sammelan.[14]
An image of Ram Narayan.
Awarded in 1991, sarangi player Ram Narayan popularised the instrument as a solo concert instrument and is considered as first internationally successful sarangi player.[15]
An image of Shakuntala Paranjpye.
Widely known for her "pioneering" work in the field of family planning, Shakuntala Paranjpye also acted in movies like Sairandhri (1933) and Kunku (1937). She was awarded with Padma Bhushan in 1991.[16]
An image of Girish Karnad.
Awarded in 1992, Girish Karnad is an actor, film director, writer and playwright in Kannada language. He is also the recipient of the Jnanpith Award.[17]
An image of Krishnaswamy Kasturirangan.
Krishnaswamy Kasturirangan is an Indian space scientist who has headed the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) from 1994 to 2003 and the Karnataka Knowledge Commission. He was awarded in 1992.[18]
An image of T. N. Krishnan.
A recipient of the Sangeetha Kalanidhi, Padma Shri and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, T. N. Krishnan is a Carnatic music violinist.[19]
An image of Sonal Mansingh.
Awarded in 1992, Sonal Mansingh is an Indian classical dancer in Bharatanatyam and Odissi dancing style.[20]
An image of Bhisham Sahni.
Bhisham Sahni was a Hindi writer, playwright and actor, famously known for his novel Tamas, for which he received the Sahitya Akademi Award. He was awarded with the Padma Bhushan in 1998.[21]
An image of George Joseph.
Considered as "the pioneer of satellite based imaging sensors in the country", George Joseph has made significant contribution to Electro-optical sensor development. Joseph was awarded with Padma Bhushan in 1999.[22]
Award recipients by year[11]
Year Number of recipients
Award recipients by field[11]
Field Number of recipients
Civil Service
Literature & Education
Public Affairs
Science & Engineering
Social Work
Trade & Industry
   # Indicates a posthumous honour
List of Padma Bhushan award recipients, showing the year, field, and state/country[11]
Year Recipient Field State
1990 Arole, RajanikantRajanikant Arole Social Work Maharashtra
1990 Bachhawat, Bimal KumarBimal Kumar Bachhawat Science & Engineering Delhi
1990 Deshpande, Purushottam LaxmanPurushottam Laxman Deshpande Arts Maharashtra
1990 Desikar, Sattaiyappa DhandapaniSattaiyappa Dhandapani Desikar Literature & Education Tamil Nadu
1990 Doraiswamy, L. K.L. K. Doraiswamy Science & Engineering [A]
1990 Ghosh, NikhilNikhil Ghosh Arts Maharashtra
1990 Goyal, B. K.B. K. Goyal Medicine Maharashtra
1990 Jasraj, Jasraj Arts Maharashtra
1990 Khalilullah, MohammadMohammad Khalilullah Medicine Delhi
1990 Malhotra, R. N.R. N. Malhotra Civil Service Maharashtra
1990 Matilal, Bimal KrishnaBimal Krishna Matilal Literature & Education [B]
1990 Mohan, InderInder Mohan Social Work Delhi
1990 Moolgaokar, SumantSumant Moolgaokar Trade & Industry Maharashtra
1990 Mukherjee, HirendranathHirendranath Mukherjee Literature & Education West Bengal
1990 Narasimhaiah, C. D.C. D. Narasimhaiah Literature & Education Karnataka
1990 Narasimhan, M. S.M. S. Narasimhan Science & Engineering Maharashtra
1990 Negi, Kunwar SinghKunwar Singh Negi Literature & Education Uttarakhand
1990 Pradhan, TrilochanTrilochan Pradhan Science & Engineering Odisha
1990 Ram, N.N. Ram Literature & Education Tamil Nadu
1990 Sen, SukumarSukumar Sen Literature & Education West Bengal
1990 Shourie, ArunArun Shourie Literature & Education Delhi
1990 Silverman, JuliusJulius Silverman Public Affairs [B]
1990 Srinivasan, M. R.M. R. Srinivasan Science & Engineering Maharashtra
1990 Valiathan, M. S.M. S. Valiathan Medicine Kerala
1991 Alkazi, EbrahimEbrahim Alkazi Arts Delhi
1991 Amarnath, LalaLala Amarnath Sports Delhi
1991 Bendre, Narayan ShridharNarayan Shridhar Bendre Arts Maharashtra
1991 Benegal, ShyamShyam Benegal Arts Maharashtra
1991 Deodhar, D. B.D. B. Deodhar Sports Maharashtra
1991 Khan, Amjad AliAmjad Ali Khan Arts Delhi
1991 Kumar, DilipDilip Kumar Arts Maharashtra
1991 Manaklao, Narayan SinghNarayan Singh Manaklao Social Work Rajasthan
1991 Mani, Muthu KrishnaMuthu Krishna Mani Medicine Tamil Nadu
1991 Narayan, RamRam Narayan Arts Maharashtra
1991 Nariman, Fali SamFali Sam Nariman Public Affairs Delhi
1991 Dev, KapilKapil Dev Sports Delhi
1991 Pancholi, ManubhaiManubhai Pancholi Public Affairs Gujarat
1991 Paranjpye, ShakuntalaShakuntala Paranjpye Social Work Maharashtra
1991 Pathak, BindeshwarBindeshwar Pathak Social Work Bihar
1991 Prasad, SamtaSamta Prasad Arts Uttar Pradesh
1991 Rajguru, BasavarajBasavaraj Rajguru Arts Karnataka
1991 Reddy, Prathap C.Prathap C. Reddy Medicine Andhra Pradesh
1991 Shankar, AmalaAmala Shankar Science & Engineering West Bengal
1991 Shirwadkar (Kusumagraj), Vishnu VamanVishnu Vaman Shirwadkar (Kusumagraj) Literature & Education Maharashtra
1991 Srinivasan, Kuthur RamakrishnanKuthur Ramakrishnan Srinivasan Literature & Education Tamil Nadu
1991 Suroor, Ale AhmadAle Ahmad Suroor Arts Uttar Pradesh
1991 Swindale, Leslie DenisLeslie Denis Swindale Science & Engineering [C]
1991 Umranangal, Jiwan SinghJiwan Singh Umranangal Public Affairs Punjab
1992 Bhagavati, Bijoy ChandraBijoy Chandra Bhagavati Public Affairs Assam
1992 Chaudhuri, DebuDebu Chaudhuri Arts Delhi
1992 Chaurasia, HariprasadHariprasad Chaurasia Arts Maharashtra
1992 Cherian, Thayil JohnThayil John Cherian Medicine Tamil Nadu
1992 Daniel, Ranjan RoyRanjan Roy Daniel Science & Engineering Tamil Nadu
1992 Dayal, VirendraVirendra Dayal Civil Service Delhi
1992 Devi, B. SarojaB. Saroja Devi Arts Karnataka
1992 Gill, Khem SinghKhem Singh Gill Science & Engineering Punjab
1992 Gopalakrishnayya, VavilalaVavilala Gopalakrishnayya Public Affairs Andhra Pradesh
1992 Hazare, AnnaAnna Hazare Social Work Maharashtra
1992 Hameed, Hakim AbdulHakim Abdul Hameed Medicine Delhi
1992 Jaggaiah, KongaraKongara Jaggaiah Arts Andhra Pradesh
1992 Karnad, GirishGirish Karnad Arts Karnataka
1992 Kasturirangan, KrishnaswamyKrishnaswamy Kasturirangan Science & Engineering Karnataka
1992 Khoshoo, Triloki NathTriloki Nath Khoshoo Science & Engineering Delhi
1992 Koyama, GoroGoro Koyama Others [D]
1992 Radha Krishna, AdusumalliAdusumalli Radha Krishna Arts Andhra Pradesh
1992 Krishnan, T. N.T. N. Krishnan Arts Tamil Nadu
1992 Lele, Ramachandra DatatrayaRamachandra Datatraya Lele Medicine Maharashtra
1992 Mahmood, TalatTalat Mahmood Arts Maharashtra
1992 Malik, Syed AbdulSyed Abdul Malik Literature & Education Assam
1992 Malvania, Dalsukh DahyabhaiDalsukh Dahyabhai Malvania Literature & Education Gujarat
1992 Mansingh, SonalSonal Mansingh Arts Delhi
1992 Menon, M. SaradaM. Sarada Menon Social Work Tamil Nadu
1992 Naushad, Naushad Arts Maharashtra
1992 Pagdi, Setu MadhavraoSetu Madhavrao Pagdi Literature & Education Maharashtra
1992 Parekh, HasmukhbhaiHasmukhbhai Parekh Trade & Industry Maharashtra
1992 Reddy, C. NarayanaC. Narayana Reddy Literature & Education Andhra Pradesh
1992 Sarabhai, MrinaliniMrinalini Sarabhai Arts Gujarat
1992 Talwar, GursaranGursaran Talwar Medicine Delhi
1992 Triguna, Brihaspati DevBrihaspati Dev Triguna Medicine Delhi
1992 Venkatalakshamma, K.K. Venkatalakshamma Arts Karnataka
1992 Vyas, C. R.C. R. Vyas Arts Maharashtra
1998 Ananthamurthy, U. R.U. R. Ananthamurthy Literature & Education Karnataka
1998 Chandrasekhar, SivaramakrishnaSivaramakrishna Chandrasekhar Science & Engineering Karnataka
1998 Chattopadhyaya, DebiprasadDebiprasad Chattopadhyaya Literature & Education West Bengal
1998 Dang, SatyapalSatyapal Dang Public Affairs Punjab
1998 Dhillon, Gurbaksh SinghGurbaksh Singh Dhillon Public Affairs Madhya Pradesh
1998 Dua, H. K.H. K. Dua Literature & Education Delhi
1998 Girinath, Maligali Ram KrishnaMaligali Ram Krishna Girinath Medicine Tamil Nadu
1998 Gupta, HemlataHemlata Gupta Medicine Delhi
1998 Mathew, K. M.K. M. Mathew Literature & Education Kerala
1998 Nair, G. MadhavanG. Madhavan Nair Science & Engineering Kerala
1998 Paroda, Rajendra SinghRajendra Singh Paroda Science & Engineering Delhi
1998 Parulkar, Gurukumar BalachandraGurukumar Balachandra Parulkar Medicine Maharashtra
1998 Rajaraman, VaidyeswaranVaidyeswaran Rajaraman Science & Engineering Karnataka
1998 Sahni, BhishamBhisham Sahni Literature & Education Delhi
1998 Satyam, Vempati ChinnaVempati Chinna Satyam Arts Tamil Nadu
1998 Singhvi, Laxmi MallLaxmi Mall Singhvi Public Affairs Delhi
1998 Tarkunde, V. M.V. M. Tarkunde Public Affairs Uttar Pradesh
1998 Venugopal, PanangipalliPanangipalli Venugopal Medicine Delhi
1999 Badrinath, S. S.S. S. Badrinath Medicine Tamil Nadu
1999 Chandra, Jag ParveshJag Parvesh Chandra Public Affairs Delhi
1999 Cherian, JacobJacob Cherian Social Work Tamil Nadu
1999 Das, PushpalataPushpalata Das Social Work Assam
1999 Godrej, Sohrab PirojshaSohrab Pirojsha Godrej Trade & Industry Maharashtra
1999 Joseph, GeorgeGeorge Joseph Science & Engineering Gujarat
1999 Kakodkar, AnilAnil Kakodkar Science & Engineering Maharashtra
1999 Kizhakemuri, D. C.D. C. Kizhakemuri[i]# Literature & Education Kerala
1999 Kumar, AshokAshok Kumar Arts Maharashtra
1999 Mishra, Vidya NiwasVidya Niwas Mishra Literature & Education Uttar Pradesh
1999 Santhanam, KrishnamurthyKrishnamurthy Santhanam Science & Engineering Delhi
1999 Shourie, H. D.H. D. Shourie Social Work Delhi
1999 Suman, Shivmangal SinghShivmangal Singh Suman Literature & Education Madhya Pradesh
1999 Upadhyay, Ram KinkarRam Kinkar Upadhyay Others Uttar Pradesh

Explanatory notes

  1. ^ The order of precedence is: Bharat Ratna, Param Vir Chakra, Ashoka Chakra, Padma Vibhushan and Padma Bhushan.[5]
Non-citizen recipients
  1. ^ Indicates a citizen of the United States
  2. ^ a b Indicates a citizen of the United Kingdom
  3. ^ Indicates a citizen of New Zealand
  4. ^ Indicates a citizen of Japan
Posthumous recipients
  1. ^ D. C. Kizhakemuri died on 26 January 1999, at the age of 85.[23]


  1. ^ "PV Sindhu recommended for Padma Bhushan, India's third highest civilian award, by sports ministry". Firstpost. 25 September 2017. Archived from the original on 26 December 2017. Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  2. ^ Lal, Shavax A. (1954). "The Gazette of India—Extraordinary—Part I" (PDF). The Gazette of India. The President's Secretariat (published 2 January 1954): 2. Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 May 2014. Retrieved 31 March 2018. The President is pleased to institute an award to be designated 'Padma Vibhushan' in three classes, namely: 'Pahela Varg', 'Dusra Varg' and 'Tisra Varg' 
  3. ^ a b c d "Padma Awards Scheme" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs (India). Archived (PDF) from the original on 9 February 2018. Retrieved 28 September 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c Ayyar, N. M. (1955). "The Gazette of India—Extraordinary—Part I" (PDF). The Gazette of India. The President's Secretariat (published 15 January 1955): 8. Archived (PDF) from the original on 18 May 2014. Retrieved 31 March 2018. All persons upon whom the decoration of 'Padma Vibhushan' ('Dusra Varg') was conferred under the Regulations issued with Notification No. 2-Pres./54, dated the 2nd January, 1954, shall, for all purposes of these regulations, be deemed to be persons on whom the decoration of Padma Bhushan has been conferred by the President. 
  5. ^ "Wearing of Medals: Precedence Of Medals". Indian Army. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 22 November 2015. 
  6. ^ Chatterjee, Saibal; Prakash, Amit (10 January 1996). "An Honourable Judgement". Outlook. Retrieved 4 January 2018. 
  7. ^ "The Constitution of India" (PDF). Ministry of Law and Justice (India). p. 36. Archived from the original (PDF) on 9 September 2014. Retrieved 19 May 2014. 
  8. ^ a b "Balaji Raghavan S. P. Anand Vs. Union of India: Transfer Case (civil) 9 of 1994". Supreme Court of India. 4 August 1997. Archived from the original on 19 May 2014. Retrieved 14 May 2014. 
  9. ^ Mukul, Akshaya; Mohan, Vishwa; Dhawan, Himanshi (6 February 2010). "Chatwal fiasco: Top civilian awards losing sheen". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 28 December 2016. Retrieved 23 June 2016. 
  10. ^ Thorpe 2011, p. C-105.
  11. ^ a b c d "Padma Awards Directory (1954–2014)" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs (India). 21 May 2014. pp. 94–117. Archived (PDF) from the original on 15 November 2014. Retrieved 22 March 2016. 
  12. ^ a b c "Those who said no to top awards". The Times of India. 20 January 2008. Archived from the original on 29 March 2016. Retrieved 23 June 2016. 
  13. ^ Mascarenhas, Anuradha (27 May 2011). "Social activist, Magsaysay winner Dr Rajnikant Arole dies at 77". The Indian Express. Archived from the original on 12 March 2018. Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  14. ^ "Profile: P. L. Deshpande". Sangeet Natak Akademi. Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  15. ^ "Sarangi maestro Ram Narayan gets Bhimsen Joshi Award". Business Standard. Indo-Asian News Service. 3 February 2016. Archived from the original on 4 February 2016. Retrieved 25 July 2016. 
  16. ^ Nair 2017, p. 149.
  17. ^ "Jnanpith for Dr Girish Karnad". Rediff.com. 21 January 1999. Retrieved 2 May 2014. 
  18. ^ Agha, Eram (26 June 2017). "Scientist Kasturirangan to Head Panel on National Education Policy". CNN-News18. Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  19. ^ "Profile: T. N. Krishnan". Sangeet Natak Akademi. Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  20. ^ "Profile: Sonal Mansingh". Jaipur Literature Festival. Archived from the original on 26 December 2017. Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  21. ^ "Profile: Bhisham Sahni". Penguin Books. Archived from the original on 27 December 2017. Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  22. ^ "Profile: George Joseph". CRC Press. Archived from the original on 4 January 2018. Retrieved 4 January 2018. 
  23. ^ "Our Inspiration: D. C. Kizhakemuri [1914–1999]". DCSMAT Institute of Printing and Imaging. Archived from the original on 8 April 2013. Retrieved 9 January 2017. 

Further reading

External links