Padma Shri (also Padma Shree) is the fourth highest civilian award in the Republic of India, after the Bharat Ratna, the Padma Vibhushan and the Padma Bhushan. Awarded by the Government of India, it is announced every year on India's Republic Day.[2]


Padma Awards were instituted in 1954 to be awarded to citizens of India in recognition of their distinguished contribution in various spheres of activity including the Arts, Education, Industry, Literature, Science, Sports, Medicine, Social Service and Public Affairs. It has also been awarded to some distinguished individuals who were not citizens of India but did contribute in various ways to India.

The selection criteria have been criticized in some quarters with the claim that many highly deserving artists have been left out in order to favor certain individuals.[3][4]

On its obverse, the words "Padma", meaning lotus in Sanskrit, and "Shri", a Sanskrit-derived honorific equivalent to 'Mr.' or 'Ms.' (ie., "Noble One in Blossom"), appear in Devanagari above and below a lotus flower. The geometrical pattern on either side is in burnished bronze. All embossing is in white gold.

As of 2017, 2840 people have received the award.[5]

Awards by decade


  1. ^ a b "Precedence Of Medals". Website. Indian Army. Retrieved 9 September 2014. 
  2. ^ "Padma award's schema" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  3. ^ "Padma's Easy Slim Zone Vrinda Gopinath". Outlookindia.com. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  4. ^ "Advani backs Merchant on Padma awards selection criticism". The Times of India. 3 February 2010. Retrieved 1 November 2017. 
  5. ^ "Previous awardees". Ministry of Home Affairs. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 1 November 2017. 

External links