Rajya Sabha MP and Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said Maharashtra should have gotten “at least 10-12 awards” . (HT FILE)
Rajya Sabha MP and Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said Maharashtra should have gotten “at least 10-12 awards” . (HT FILE)

Padma awards row: MVA unhappy with less awards to Maharashtra

Leaders of the ruling Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government on Tuesday expressed their discontent over the number of Padma awardees from Maharashtra. Rajya Sabha MP and Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut told reporters that Maharashtra should have got “at least 10-12 awards” and it was “surprising” that the Central government announced only six awards for the state.
PUBLISHED ON JAN 28, 2021 01:10 AM IST

Leaders of the ruling Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government on Tuesday expressed their discontent over the number of Padma awardees from Maharashtra. Rajya Sabha MP and Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut told reporters that Maharashtra should have got “at least 10-12 awards” and it was “surprising” that the Central government announced only six awards for the state.

“Maharashtra is such a huge state. Its contribution towards the country is so huge. Even the Covid-19 vaccine for the country is being manufactured here. Not only me, many people were surprised that the state received only six awards,” he told reporters on Tuesday.

Maharashtra Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant said, “The state had suggested 99 names to the Centre, of which only one name was considered. The state committee had recommended Sindhutai Sapkal’s name for Padma Bhushan, but she received Padma Shri. It is unfortunate that the state’s recommendations were not given any importance.” He even alleged that one of the criteria for the awards seems to be inclination towards the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

A senior official from the state’s protocol department, on the condition of anonymity, said, “Maharashtra suggested 99 names for the awards, of which only one was accepted. Every year, almost 10% of the awardees are from Maharashtra, which dropped to 5% this year.”

The Central government announced a total of 119 Padma awards this year which includes seven Padma Vibhushan, 10 Padma Bhushan and 102 Padma Shri awards. While no Padma Vibhushan was bestowed on a Maharashtrian this year, Rajnikant Shroff, the founder of leading chemical company United Phosphorus Limited received Padma Bhushan.

Padma Shri awards were bestowed on Namdeo C Kamble, Parshuram Atmaram Gangavane, Jaswantiben Jamnadas Popat, Girish Prabhine and Sindhutai Sapkal.

BJP leader Pravin Darekar, leader of opposition at Maharashtra legislative council, said, “The awards are bestowed by following a process and it is based on merit. It is not like it is distributed among states. MVA only seems to be angry because their recommendations were not taken in.”

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