New Delhi, Apr 15: President Pratibha Patil on Tuesday, Apr 14 conferred the National Padma awards for the year 2008 on 66 personalities from various fields.
Padma Vibhushan, India's Second highest civilian honor after Bharat Ratna was awarded to four people owing to their commendable achievements. One of them was G. Madhavan Nair, Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) who has significantly contributed to the development of multi-stage satellite launch vehicles and associated technologies. And Sunderlal Bahuguna was awarded for his contributions in saving Himalayas. Other two are historian Debi Prasad Chattopadhyaya and renowned cardiologist Purshottam Lal.
Fourteen people were awarded with Padma Bhushan, including Abhinav Bindra, who was awarded for being the first Indian individual gold medalist in the Olympic Games.
Padma Shri awards were presented to 47 prominent persons, in recognition of their distinguished contribution in various spheres of activity including the radio, sports, film and music industry. This group included Ameen Sayani for his contribution to radio broadcasting, Helen Khan in recognition to her contribution to Indian film industry, musician Hridaynath Mangeshkar, noted cueist Pankaj Advani and playback singer Udit Narayan.