NEW DELHI: L K Advani, Amitabh Bachchan, thespian Dilip Kumar and Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal were on Sunday chosen for this year's Padma Vibhushan, the second highest civilian honour, as government gave a saffron touch honouring eminent people of various fields in this year's list of Padma awardees.
Eminent lawyer K K Venugopal, D Veerendra Heggade of the famous Dharmasthala Jain temple in Karnataka, eminent nuclear scientist M R Srinivasan and Aga Khan were also chosen for Padma Vibhushan.
Former CEC N Gopalaswami, Microsoft chief Bill Gates and his wife Melinda were selected for Padma Bhushan in the list of 104 people whose names were released on the eve of Republic day.
This list comprises nine Padma Vibhushan, 20 Padma Bhushan and 75 Padma Shri awardees. 17 of them were women and equal number were in the category of foreigners, NRIs, PIOs and four posthumous awardees.
Former Lok Sabha Secretary General Subhash C Kashyap, journalists Rajat Sharma and Swapan Dasgupta, eminent lawyer Harish Salve, cardiologist Ashok Seth, Indian-American mathematician Manjul Bhargava were also in the list of Padma Bhushan awardees. Hindi journalist Ram Bahadur Rai has been chosen for Padma Shri.
Hindu religious leader Jagadguru Ramanandacharya Swami Rambhadracharya (Padma Vibhushan), Swami Satyamitranand Giri (Padma Bhushan), both from Uttar Pradesh, Shivakumara Swami of Karnataka (Padma Bhushan) and Jagat Guru Amrta Suryananda Maha Raja of Portugal (Padma Shri) and former NCERT Director J S Rajput (Padma Shri) also figure in today's list.
Late Dawoodi Bohra leader Syedna Mohammad Burhanuddin has been chosen for Padma Shri.
In the trade and industry discipline, Karim Al Hussaini Aga Khan, whose domicile is France/UK, has been selected for the Padma award.
Former Infosys board member T V Mohandas Pai and Indian American economist Nandrajan Raj Chetty too have been selected for Padma Shri under trade and industry discipline.
Ashok Gulati, former chairman of Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP), will also get the Padma Shri in the public affairs category, according to an official statement.