While announcing September 15 as the last date for filing nominations/recommendations for the Padma Awards 2023, the government said the nominations will only be received online through https://awards.gov.in.
In fact, the common portal has been developed to bring together all the awards of various government ministries, departments and agencies on one platform.
These include the Digital India awards, Jeevan Raksha Padak Series of Awards, the Nari Shakti Puraskar, Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya Telecom Skill Excellence Award, Sardar Patel National Unity Award, Subhash Chandra Bose Aapda Prabandhan Puraskar and the National Awards for Institutions engaged in empowering persons with disabilities.
Besides the Padma Awards, the nominations for 14 other award categories are open on the portal currently such as Digital India Awards (by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology), National Award for Excellence in Forestry-2022 (by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change), National Gopal Ratna Award-2022 (by the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying), National Water Awards-2022 (by the Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation), National Award for Individual Excellence-2022 (by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities).
As on date, the Rashtriya Puraskar Portal has received 72,346 registrations and 73,465 nominations by people (for themselves or for others) in various categories. The upcoming nominations include that for the National Technical Teacher’s Award (Department of Higher Education), Kaushalacharya Award (Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship), Sardar Patel National Unity Award (Ministry of Home Affairs), and Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya Telecom Skill Excellence Award (Department of Telecommunications).
As many as 10 of these national awards have been instituted after 2014 by the Narendra Modi government. These include the Kaushalacharya Award (2019) to felicitate trainers for exceptional contribution towards creating a skilled work-force; National Award for Excellence in Forestry (2021) to promote professional competence in the scientific community in the field of forestry; the National Awards for Outstanding Services in the Field of Prevention of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse (2015) for outstanding services in the prevention of substance abuse; National CSR Awards (2019) to encourage companies to spend the entire eligible CSR spend; National Gopal Ratna Award (2017) to motivate farmers to take up productivity enhancement of indigenous breeds of milch animals; National Technical Teacher’s Award (2019) to identify the extraordinary teachers and recognize the excellence; National Water Awards (2018) to encourage innovative practices of ground water augmentation; Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya Telecom Skill Excellence Award (2018) to encourage telecom skill ecosystem; Sardar Patel National Unity Award (2019) to recognize the contributions to promote the cause of national unity and integrity; and Subhash Chandra Bose Aapda Prabandhan Puraskar (2018) to recognize the excellent work done by individuals and Institutions in the field of Disaster Management.
The Padma awards will be announced on Republic Day. The award seeks to recognise ‘work of distinction’ and is given for distinguished and exceptional achievements/service in all fields/disciplines, such as art and literature, sports, medicine, social work, science and engineering, public affairs, civil service, trade and industry.
In a statement issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, the government says it is committed to transforming Padma Awards into “People’s Padma”, requesting all citizens to make nominations on the portal, including self nomination. “Concerted efforts may be made to identify talented persons whose excellence and achievements really deserve to be recognised from among women, weaker sections, SCs & STs, divyang persons and who are doing selfless service to the society,” the statement added.