Who is Tulsi Gowda, the Padma shri recipient?

Who is Tulsi Gowda, the Padma shri recipient?

The picture of a barefoot Padma Shri recipient Tulsi Gowda is going viral as she greets the PM Modi and other dignitaries.

Tulsi Gowda is the Karnataka tribal environmentalist who has planted close to 30,000 saplings over a period of six months. She was among the 119 Padma Awards recipients for the year 2020 announced on the eve of Republic Day.

The Padma awards were given their awards yesterday by the President Ramnath Kovind. Many prominent personalities received the award for their distinguished services in different spheres of society.

However, what caught the eye of the netizens was the frail 77 year old environmentalist who after receiving the award greeted the PM of the nation barefoot and dressed in her tribal attire. The gesture was reciprocated by the PM Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah.

The Prime Minister could be seen clasping her hands in another picture as he congratulates her on her achievement and speaks to her.

Many on twitter captioned the image as the “Image of the day”. Many users said that Tulsi Gowda is “India’s pride now”.

“President Kovind presents Padma Shri to Smt Tulsi Gowda for Social Work. She is an environmentalist from Karnataka who has planted more than 30,000 saplings and has been involved in environmental conservation activities for the past six decades,” tweeted the President of India’s office.

Tulsi Gowda

Tulsi Gowda was born in a poor family in the Honnali village in Karnataka. She lost her father when she was just two years old. As a very young child, she started working with her mother at a local nursery.

Tulsi Gowda never got the opportunity to attend school and learn from educational institute, however, she never let this become her handicap. Today, she is reputed to be an encyclopaedia of forests with “endless knowledge” of different varieties of plants and herbs.

Tulsi Gowda belongs to the Halakki tribals of Karnataka. She was married at a very young age, even before she was in her teens. Tulsi Gowda worked for 30 years at a state-run nursery before she was given a permanent job. She retired after 15 more years of service at the age of 70.

The environmentalist has planted 30,000 saplings and has been involved in environmental conservation activities for the past six decades.

Padma Awards

Padma Awards are the second highest civilian honours given by the Indian Government each year after Bharat Ratna. The Padma Awards were constituted in 1954 under the name of Padma Vibhushan.

The Padma Vibhushan was further subdivided into 3 categories- Pehla Varg, Dusra Varg, Teesra Varg. The three categories were later rechristened as Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri vide presidential notification issued in 1955.

The awards are given in the following order-

  • Padma Vibhushan for exceptional and distinguished service.
  • Padma Bhushan for distinguished service of a high order; and
  • Padma Shri for distinguished service.

All nominations received for Padma Awards are placed before the Padma Awards Committee, which is constituted by the Prime Minister every year. The Padma Awards Committee is headed by the Cabinet Secretary and includes Home Secretary, Secretary to the President and four to six eminent persons as members. The recommendations of the committee are submitted to the Prime Minister and the President of India for approval.

Year 2020

Many eminent personalities were selected for the Padma Awards, 2020 like Karan Johar (Director and Producer), Tarun Gogoi (Former CM of Assam), Kangana Ranaut (Actress), P.V Sindhu (Shuttler), Ram Vilas Paswan (Politician), Keshubhai Patel (Former CM of Gujarat), Shinzo Abe (Former PM of Japan) etc.

 This year there were 119 recipients of the Padma Awards. Among these 119, 29 were women and 1 was a transgender named Manjamma Jogati (Dance artist) from Karnataka.

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