From Padma, with love…

It is an innate characteristic in all life forms to enjoy appreciation, to bask in glory, to hog the limelight, to be awarded and rewarded. The feel good factor is immense in us humans and we enjoy adulation. The highest mark of appreciation in our societies come in the form of  decorations by medals, trophies and certificates. One most prominent are the highest civilian awards, the Padma awards comprising of Padma vibushan, Padma bhushan and the Padma Shri awards ( in order of merit ). These are given to accomplished individuals in the areas of arts, sciences, trade & industry, civil service, medicine, literature,social service . It is indeed a matter of great pride when numerous years of hard work is appreciated finally at a national level and recognition is justifiably conferred. Men and women of honor, dignity and pride are bestowed with this ultimate recognition in our society by the Government of India. We in turn look up to these noteworthy individuals as our guides and role models.

However, of late there awards are being handed out to individuals who I have most certainly bettered in my moral norms and responsibilities as an Indian. The irony of awards being conferred to dubious individuals like Sant Singh Chatwal who was arrested by the CBI for defrauding banks and falsifying returns with the Securities and exchange board in the US remains bitter. In fact this man is even barred from becoming a Director / officer in a public entity. However, it appears through his political connections and clout he has gained access to the big wigs in the recommendation committees.The process of selection is as dubious as some of the nominees themselves.The Central Government wields the power of selection based on recommendations from committees who shroud the nominees in a blanket of secrecy. This is certainly not acceptable. More importantly the ministry of home affairs would need to make public, the list of nominees along with the individuals recommending them and the date of meetings discussing these recommendations.It is believed that minutes of meetings that discuss the recommendations are not made public and the selection process is kept mysterious. Besides, there is no process for clearing the nominees from the tax authorities, CBI , customs authority etc which I think becomes very relevant when con men and de facto con men are shortlisted. I also think it makes sense to possibly merge the three hierarchical Padma awards into one as those conferred with the Padma Shri are promoted to the next level thereby minimising the chance of other worthy individuals outside the Padma paradigm to make the cut. I am also cynical of awards being handed out to people who have serviced the Prime Minister and hence deserve to be lauded like his Doctors who performed a surgery on him. Is the Prime Minister’s heart more valuable than the hearts of thousand’s of people who cannot afford first class hospital facilities and have free by pass surgeries conducted on them by dedicated Doctors at Dr Devi Shetty’s Narayana Hrudayalaya?

Chatwal’s award has sent ripples through the larger community and eminent journalists like Pritish Nandy ( youngest winner of Padma Shri 33 years back) and Vir Sanghvi have twittered about pressing the Government to provide information on the basis of Chatwals’s selection. The RTI Act of 2005 has enabled the democracy to rightful information from the Government. It has been gratifying to watch this motion against Chatwal’s award as it makes us all believe in the right to transparency of information in a country whose Government is tightlipped and whose ways are questionable. If it is Chatwal today, then why not confer an award to Ramalinga Raju, the man who single-handedly wiped off cash balances and did the great Indian rope trick with or without eminent auditors failing to sniff him out. 

The awards will slowly lose it’s significance as it already appears that recommendations and money power can buy it out. Men and women who rightfully deserve the award are being overlooked while deserving men and women who have won it in the past are skeptical of it’s merit. Of late, members belonging to prominent families are the front-runners and awards are given on the basis of who they are rather than what they did.  Besides the prestigious Padma awards there are a trillion other man-made, feel good awards which serve various purposes. Could the Padma awards at least not be tarnished when there are so many more to defile.Sarcastic taunts about Padma’s character are echoed in the corridors of social networking sites. Kasab, Rathore, ND Tiwari and Deve Gowda are recommended spitefully by the citizens of this country. The Padma awards are no longer deemed to be conferred on merit, they are conferred out of love. Love for money and power.


19 Responses to “From Padma, with love…”

  1. One more great example of corruption! corruption has tarnished image of India so very badly. what else could we expect form corrupt minds !?
    may be all those Ramalingam,Gouda,koda etc etc should be awarded with all those ‘Padma’ awards or may be those ‘Chakra’ awards.
    lol…! on other hand why not give it to everyone who is not only corrupt but a thief,murderer,terrorist or an assassin.

    • Monalisa – very soon your wish may just come true.

    • Monalisa – I beg to differ on your view with the chakra awards. the chakra awards are the only true awards left in the country. they are still given to deserving citizens. Our armed forces are the most deserving and rightfully so.

      • well ! you got me wrong there. i just mentioned ‘Chakra’ with ‘padma’ being highly prestigious awards in India. I didn’t mean that its not given to deserving armed force personels. I am glad corruption didn’t touch it yet. never know about i was just pointing out the possibilities.

      • Thanks Monalisa..:)

  2. parmaatma Says:

    Good inspiring log.

    This brings a very pertinent issue to light. The role of civil justice. It is an accepted fact that in diverse societies like ours justice is not arrived at through evaluation, but on the contrary it is doled out as and when time permits.

    Just as the beat constable in our community chooses order over law, justice in our society chooses abstractions over realism.

    Unfortunately, this is the reality that we the people actually live with – not the reality show that is put up by the media for entertainment.

    Thank you,


    • Absolutely right Sudhir. Civil justice in India is for the rich and by their own terms and conditions. Where does the common man stand a chance?

    • Sudhir – I cannot post on your blog. Anyway, my question is what is your definition of paramaatma? Is paramaatma infinite or finite? Is it zero, like silence and nothingness?

      • parmaatma Says:

        Parmaatma is derived from the name ‘Ahura Mazda’ the name of God given in Zarathustra’s gatha. Zarathustra has many names: Zoroaster, Atharvan, Osho, Parshuram (Raam of the Parsi’s). Parmaatma is the essential consciousness of the universe – the source of both Purusha and Prakriti – like the black-hole in the theory of the universe.

        The interesting difference between Avestha (Actually pronounced Aveda) and the later versions called Rig Veda written by the Angirasa and other families in the Indus Valley is that Avestha has one God called Ahura Mazda (the followers are Asuras) and Vedic religion is polytheistic and has many gods called Devas.

        Indra, Marut, Brishaspati etc are Devas and are denounced by the Avestha. While Mitra and the Ashwins are hailed as kind and benevolent by both.

        All are pre-avesthic personifications of natural forces. We cannot say for certain that they existed in human form.

        But worth reading and learning for the sheer scope of their wide perceptions.


        PS: Please do write your comments by mail. I am glad you are interested in the subject.

  3. Sudhir – Wonderful, thank you. Who is Raam of the PArsi’s though?

    • parmaatma Says:

      Parshuram the brahmin who lived like a Kshatriya, reverred in Assam, Bangalore (city estanlished by the Vanga i.e. bengalis) and Kerala. He also appears in sections of Ramayana. He is the same person Parshuram in the Avestha. Zarathustra is Parshuram according to the Vedic references. Log on to the official site of the Parsi religious scriptures.

      All vedic characters appear in the Avestha which is dated about 1000 BCE – about 300 years ‘before’ the Hindu vedic period began.

      Its a small world.


      • Sudhir – Bangalore was not established by the Bengalis. Where did you learn about this. I will check the web site.

      • The address is ; with the ‘h’

        Bangalore has a very unique distinction of having a mention in most religious texts on earth. Its history has been traced from 1000 BCE albeit with minor variations in its name. It was founded by Parshuram aka Zarathustra. You will find all the evidences and proofs in a book soon-to-be-released and that is currently with the publishers in Trichur. I am proof-reading it with the author.

        Bangalore was ruled by the Aryans from across ganges till the Chola clan won it in a battle (~1020 AD) But that is very recent in history as compared to the fact that the Aryans entered the Indian peninsula and drafted the Vedic regime about 1500 years before that.

        The first Rik are written by Zarathustra also called Parshuram and Osho and Atharvan.

        Also, there is no mention of the Vedas during Ramayana, as they were still being scripted by the sages. They have been traced around 900-800 BCE and were followed centuries later by the Brahmanas, the Puranas and the Upanishads.

        By the time Buddha and Mahavir came on the scene, the vedic religion had already become a ritualistic cult.

        I own copies of several original research papers done by great scholars like Shankara, S. Radhakrishnan, Max Mueller and others on this subject and have been collecting them for the past 18 years.

        So till I place the evidences take me on my word! 🙂


  4. Anand Khare Says:

    1. Audit is such a waste of time,you see.
    2. Doctors and Lawyers in New Delhi get more awards than rest of India. Although most deserving work is being done by doctors at other places.It remians unnoticed by the world. Jungle mein more nacha kis ne dekha…


    • Anand – Actually Audit is not a waste of time, the auditors who are doing it are careless. Verification even if done on random or sampling basis can be effective if the method is right.I agree about your point on Doctors though.

  5. Sudhir – I am simply amazed, I shall take your word for it and I shall mail you and write more. This is simply incredible. It would be interesting to read Shankara’s work though at some stage and of course the book you are proof reading. This is indeed a startling revelation. Besides , Kempegowda is credited to being the founder or so we learnt it in history. Parashuram is rather shocking.

  6. parmaatma Says:

    Replied by mail. The last one here disappeared when I clicked on the notification.

    Sorry if I seem to be using too much space on a completely different subject!


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