Three eminent personalities from Gujarat bagged the highest civilian awards on Monday, 25th January, 2016 as the ‘Padma awards’ were announced on the eve of Republic Day celebrations. The Padma awards – one of the highest civilian Awards of the country – are conferred in 3 categories, namely, Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri and are given in various disciplines including art, social work, public affairs, science and engineering, trade and industry, medicine, literature and education, sports, civil service among others.
Among the ‘Padma Shri’ awardees from the state, include veteran folk artist Bhikhudan Gadhvi in the field of Art (Folk Music), Dahyabhai Shastri in the field of literature and education and Ahmedabad -based neurologist Dr Sudhir V Shah in the field of medicine (Neurology).
Dahyabhai Shastri said, “For me, this award is like a huge recognition of Sanskrit.” Dr Sudhir V Shah has worked in many fields like medicines, research, music, Jainism and spirituality among others. Nearly 50,000 copies of his books have been sold so far and the money earned from them has been given to charity.
Bhikhudan Gadhvi (67), a Junagadh-based folk-musician, has previously received the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi Award given by Sangeet Natak Akademi, the country’s national academy for music, dance and drama, for the year 2009.
Gadhvi is credited for keeping alive folk literature and vocal traditions through his rendering of tales and singing of folk songs through the medium of ‘dayras’ or Dayro, a form of Gujarati folk narrative song. While ‘Padma Shri’ is awarded for distinguished service in any field, all 3 award categories are conferred by the President of India at the Rashtrapati Bhawan, usually in March – April, every year.
In the Awards list 19 of the awardees are women and the list also includes 10 persons from the category of foreigners, NRIs, PIOs and 4 Posthumous awardees.
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