Premji gets Padma Vibhushan;

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Kochhar awarded Padma Bhushan

New Delhi, Jan 25 (PTI) Wipro Chairman Azim Premji, ITCChairman Y C Deveshwar and ICICI Bank Managing Director andCEO Chanda Kochhar are among 12 industry leaders who have beenconferred with the Padma civilian awards this year.

While Premji (65) is the only industrialist who has beenconferred the nation''s second highest civilian award PadmaVibhushan this year, eight others have been awarded the PadmaBhushan. Three others, including a non-resident Indian havebeen conferred the Padma Shri.

Besides Kochhar and Deveshwar, Padma Bhushan awardeesinclude Dr Reddy''s Laboratories Chairman K Anji Reddy, InfosysCEO and MD S Gopalakrishnan, NIIT Chairman Rajendra S Pawar,HCL co-founder Ajai Chowdhary.

Max India Chairman Analjit Singh, GVK Group Chairman andMD GVK Reddy are also on the list of Padma Bhushan recipients.

An electrical engineering graduate from StanfordUniversity, USA, Premji has been leading Wipro since 1966,when it was focused only in manufacturing of hydrogenatedcooking fat.

Since then, Wipro has expanded operations and is now aUSD 5 billion group with presence in sectors including in ITand BPO spread over 50 countries. The company is India''s thirdlargest software exporter after TCS and Infosys.

Another noted awardee is diversified business group ITC''sDeveshwar (63). He is an engineering graduate from IIT Delhiand joined ITC Ltd in 1968. In 1996 he became the ChiefExecutive and Chairman of the company, which is now a USD 6billion group. Between 1991 and 1994, he also led Air India asChairman and Managing Director.

Kochhar (49) is the only woman industry leader to featureon the list this year. She started as a management trainee in1984 in ICICI and rose through the ranks. In 2009 she tookover the reins of the bank, which currently has assets of USD81 billion and is the largest private lender of the country.

Reddy has also been awarded the Padma Bhushan. Sincefounding the pharmaceutical firm in 1984, Reddy (70) has ledDr Reddy''s Laboratories to become a top innovative drugresearch and discovery firm in the Indian pharma industry. Heis also a member of the Prime Minister''s Council on Trade andIndustry. .

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