For the first time in the history of Indian sports, all the athletes recommended for Padma Awards are women.
The Indian Sports Ministry sent the list of recommendations for this year’s Padma Awards, naming six-time world champion MC Mary Kom for Padma Vibhushan and ace shuttler PV Sindhu for Padma Bhushan.
The Manipur boxer, who is the only woman to become World Amateur Boxing champion for a record six times, and the only woman boxer to have won a medal in each one of the seven world championships, becomes the first woman athlete to be recommended by the Sports Ministry for Padma Vibhushan, the country’s highest civilian honour after Bharat Ratna.
Sindhu, who became the first Indian to win the BWF World Championships in August, has been recommended for the Padma Bhushan, the country’s third-highest civilian award. The 24-year old Hyderabadi shuttler had got the Padma Shri in 2015.