Cricket icon Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Billiards player Pankaj Advani, actor Manoj Navneet Joshi and artist Laxman Pai were amongst the 43 Padma awardees who were honoured by President Ram Nath Kovind at the second Investiture ceremony here on Monday.
On March 20, the President had given 43 Padma awards in the first part of the investiture ceremony. Dhoni, who holds the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel conferred by the Indian Territorial Army, came in uniform and marched to the podium to receive Padma Bhushan from the President to thunderous applause. He was watched among others by his wife, Sakshi, in the audience.
Besides Dhoni, the President presented Padma Bhushan awards to Pankaj Advani, Laxman Pai and folk musician Sharda Sinha. Late Russian Ambassador to India Alexandar Kadakin was also conferred Padma Bhushan posthumously. Of the 38 Padma Shri award winners, there were four absentees.
Among the Padma Shri winners were Malaysian classical dancer Datuk Ramli Ibrahim, youth leader Hun Many from Cambodia, Tomio Mizokami from Japan for Indian Languages, Thant Myint U from Myanmmar for Public Affairs, malai HajiAbdullah Bin Haji Malai Othman from Bruneii for social work, Sanduk Ruit from Nepal for Opthamology and Nguyen Tien Thien from Vietnam for Spiritualism.
Among those who attended the function were Vice-President M. Vekaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.