Padma award nominations open to public, but will it help?

The government of India for the first time, allowed the general public to nominate people for the Padma awards this year.
Saina Nehwal, left, receives her Padma Bhushan award in 2016, from President Pranab Mukherjee.

The government of India has, for the first time, allowed the general public to nominate people for the Padma awards this year — the Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan. All one needs to do is log on to, register on the site with their Aadhaar number and nominate a person. Experts in various fields weigh in their opinions:

Mani Shankar, filmmaker
Someone like Pt Bheemsen Joshi or Sachin Tendulkar may not have to lobby for an award, because their achievements speak for themselves. But there are people who also feel that unless they lobby for it, they won’t win.

I’m not sure how this will help the power of lobbying to go. I’m going to adopt a wait-and-watch attitude, and maybe a year down the line, we’ll know whether this has been effective in creating a more transparent system or not.

Laxman Aelay, artist
This is a welcome move. With this kind of participation the talent pool is widened and people who we might not have heard of, but who have done excellent work, will be brought to the forefront. One needs to be careful that the sanctity of the awards ceremony is not brought down with people nominating just about anyone on the list.

Kaushalya Reddy, dancer
It’s a good idea, because there are a few unsung artists who haven’t been noticed. But, everybody under the sun will feel like they’re eligible to apply. Even if people apply, who is going to filter them and how would they verify the nominees?

If you look at art, one particular artist gets to sit as a committee member and then he or she gets along with, will get the award. There needs to be different kind of people sitting at the state level and recognise people from different fields and verify the nominees.

Dr Prahlada, former director — DRDO
Only people who have some accomplishments to their name should be allowed to nominate people. Somebody off the street cannot nominate. If you make this completely open, there could be someone working in a bank as a manager nominating someone else for work in a scientific area, which is not really correct.

There needs to be some norms and guidelines drawn up — only someone who has achievements to his/her credit should nominate people. Otherwise you’ll end up with thousands of applications and you won’t know whom to rely on and whom not to. The spirit of the decision is good, but the way it has been implemented should have been better.


Source by deccanchronicle….