President Ram Nath Kovind conferred ‘Padma Vibhushan’, the second highest civilian honour, on Guinness record-breaking music director and Maestro Ilaiyaraaja at a glittering ceremony held at the Rashtrapati Bhawan yesterday.
Winners of ‘Padma’ awards – ‘Padma Vibhushan’, ‘Padma Bhushan’ and ‘Padma Shri’ – were announced on the eve of the Republic Day celebrations in January this year. Millions of fans of Ilaiyaraaja went ecstatic when his name featured in the list of ‘Padma Vibhushan’ award winners as it was the second highest civilian honour given to ordinary citizens; only ‘Bharat Ratna’ lies ahead for civilians.
President Ram Natah Kovind honoured the ‘Padma’ award winners by conferring them with the awards which carried a medal, citation and cash-prizes. ‘Padma Vibhushan’ was given to 3 persons including Ilaiyaraaja; ‘Padma Bhushan’ to 9 persons and ‘Padma Shri’ to 73 individuals.
Maestro Ilaiyaraaja, who had won the national award for ‘best music director’ five times, was already the winner of the ‘Padma Bhushan’ award and got the ‘Padma Vibhushan’ amid clapping by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.
Let’s congratulate the ‘God of Music’ once again on his monumental achievement!