Kanpur, Jan 27: Indian captain Virat Kohli has described the Padma Shri award for him as an "appreciation by the whole country" and not just restricted to sports alone.
On January 25 (Tuesday), Kohli was chosen for the prestigious Padma Shri honour in the sports category along with 7 others.
The 28-year-old Delhi batsman will receive the Padma Shri award, the 4th highest civilian honour of the country, from President Pranab Mukherjee in the month of March or April.
Reacting to the news, Kohli said that it was a "huge honour" and it is a "very proud moment".
"Obviously (it is) a huge honour for me to win the Padma Shri award, the fourth highest civilian honour in this country," Kohli told the Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) website yesterday (January 26).
"It is not just related to sports but an appreciation by the whole country. It gives me huge pleasure to receive this award and something I am grateful of. I got to know this yesterday (January 25). My family, coach and all the people close to me are very happy about it. It is indeed a very proud moment for me," he added.
Kohli joins Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly, Anil Kumble, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Harbhajan Singh, VVS Laxman, Yuvraj Singh and other cricketers in the Padma Shri awardees list.
Kohli captained India in a Twenty20 International for the first time yesterday at Kanpur's Green Park Stadium. However, his leadership debut in the shortest format of the game ended in a 7-wicket defeat to England.
India and England will face off again in the 2nd T20I in Nagpur on Sunday (Janary 29). The series ends in Bengaluru on February 1.