History of Padma Vibhushan Award
Padma Vibhushan Award was established by a Presidential decree on 2nd of January, 1954. The award was originally established as the ‘Pahela Varg’ or ‘First Class’ of the three classes of ‘Padma’ awards. Since 1954, a total of 300 people have received the award. After 1954, the award was being given every year, except for a short period from 13th of July, 1977 to 26th of January, 1980, when it was suspended due to unfortunate circumstances. Also, no award was given between the years 1992 and 1998.
Design of Padma Vibhushan Award
As per the original design, Padma Vibhushan Award was a circular gold medal, with a diameter of about 1-3/8 inches. A lotus flower was inscribed in the center of the medal, with the term ‘Padma Vibhushan’ written above. There was also a lotus wreath below. A state emblem with ‘Desh Seva’ or ‘National Service’ was written above on the reverse side of the medal. However, the design was changed within a year after its inception on 8th of January, 1955. The view behind the change was the removal of class structure. The new design of the Padma Vibhushan Award was amended on 30th of August, 1955 to make a miniature badge of the award. The award was further redesigned on 26th of January, 1957. In the year 1957, the badge was altered to burnished bronze and was embossed in white gold.
Presently, the award is a circular toned bronze badge, with a diameter of 1-3/16 inch. It has geometrical patterns. There is a lotus flower embossed in the center of the badge, with four major petals in white gold. Above and below the lotus flower, the term ‘Padma Vibhushan’ is written in silver gilt. On the reverse side of the badge, the national emblem along with the motto is inscribed below in white gold. Padma Vibhushan Awardees hang the badge from a ring and wear it with a ribbon that is medium pink in color. The female recipients of the award wear the badge with a bow fashioned from the ribbon.
Padma Vibhushan Awardees
In the very first year of its inception, a total of 6 extremely talented people received the Padma Vibhushan Award. These people were Satyendra Nath Bose, Nandalal Bose, Zakir Husain, Balasaheb Gangadhar Kher, V. K. Krishna Menon and Jigme Dorji Wangchuk. In 2009, a total of 10 people received the award. Murli Manohar Joshi, Sharad Pawar, Udupi Ramachandra Rao, and Jaggi Vasudev are some of the Padma Vibhushan Awardees for the year 2017.