To be honoured with the Padma Shri, Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli and Rio Olympics bronze medallist Sakshi Malik feature in the list of Padma awardees for 2017. Other sports personalities on the list include the Indian hockey captain PR Sreejesh, Paralympic gold medallist Thangavellu Mariyappan, gymnast Dipa Karmakar and discus thrower Vikas Gowda.
Padma Vibhushan awardees include singer, K J Yesudas, spiritual leader Jaggi Vasudev, Sharad Pawar, Murli Manohar Joshi as well as PA Sangma (posthumously).
In a heartening development, this year's Padma awards list seems to have focused on 'unsung heroes'. Included among the awardees are Imrat Khan, a folk singer from West Bengal and an IITian from Madhya Pradesh who has dedicated his life to social work. There is also Sukri Bommagowda, known as the nightingale of the Halakki Vokkalga tribe, one of the three aboriginal tribes of the Uttara Kannada district.
Others include a physically challenged farmer who transformed drought-hit Banaskantha in Gujarat into a major pomegranate producer and a tea-garden worker in West Bengal who converted his bike into an ambulance.
Eli Ahmed, a writer activist from Assam known for her contribution to children's and women's literature, and Anuradha Koirala, who has rescued and rehabilitated 12,000 sex trafficking victims, will be honoured with the Padma Shri award.
The Padma Shri will also be conferred on the captain of Indian cricket team for the visually challenged who led it to T20 and ODI world cups.
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