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Republic Day 2022: Neeraj Chopra, Pramod Bhagat and Vandana Kataria Honoured with Padma Shri

Neeraj Chopra celebrates after winning gold in the men’s javelin throw at Tokyo Olympics, on August 7, 2021. India won seven medals at the Olympics this year, its best haul so far. (REUTERS/Andrew Boyers)

Neeraj Chopra celebrates after winning gold in the men’s javelin throw at Tokyo Olympics, on August 7, 2021. India won seven medals at the Olympics this year, its best haul so far. (REUTERS/Andrew Boyers)

Sumit Antil, Pramod Bhagat, Neeraj Chopra, Shankarnarayana Menon, Faisal Ali Dar, Vandana Kataria, Avani Lekhara, Brahmanand Sankhwalkar have been honoured with Padma Shri.

Neeraj Chopra, Pramod Bhagat and Vandana Kataria have been honoured with Padma Shri on the eve of 2022 Republic Day. Sumit Antil, Shankarnarayana Menon, Faisal Ali Dar, Avani Lekhara, Brahmanand Sankhwalkar join the trio to be conferred with the Padma Shri, as Double gold medallist Paralympian Devendra Jhajharia got honoured with the Padma Bhushan.

Women’s hockey player Vandana Kataria, former India football captain Brahmanand Sankhwalkar, Faisal Ali Dar, a martial arts coach from Bandipora in Jammu and Kashmir and another martial arts exponent, the 93-year-old Sankaranarayana Menon Chundayil an expert in Kerala’s traditional kalarippayattu, received the Padma Shri awards.

With India reaping a bumper harvest at the Tokyo Paralympic Games in 2021, para-sportspersons got the maximum awards among sportspersons with Pramod Bhagat, gold in SL3 category in para-badminton, Sumit Antil, who rewrote the World Record five times on his way to gold in javelin throw F64, and para-shooter Avani Lekhara, who won a gold in women’s 10m air rifle standing and bronze women’s 50m air rifle standing, at Tokyo.

They are among the 107 persons that have been named for this year’s Padma Shri award announced on Tuesday.

Earlier in the day, Subedar Neeraj Chopra was awarded Param Vishisht Seva Medal on Tuesday for his distinguished service. Neeraj created history last year by winning India’s first athletics gold medal in Olympics.

Chopra, a Subedar with the 4 Rajputana Rifles in the Indian Army, had produced a second-round throw of 87.58m in the javelin throw finals at Tokyo Olympics in August 2021 to win the gold medal.

The Indian Army on Tuesday released a “list of Army personnel awarded for their gallantry and distinguished service on the occasion of Republic Day 2022”.

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first published:January 25, 2022, 20:43 IST