Dr Vajira Chitrasena and the late Prof Indra Dassanayake, two daughters of Sri Lanka have been awarded the Padma Shri, one of the highest civilian awards in India.
The award has been given to them for their pioneering contributions in their field of work and to India Sri Lanka ties, the Indian High Commission in Colombo said today.
Padma Awards — one of the highest civilian Awards of the country, are conferred in three categories, namely, Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri. The Awards are given in various disciplines/ fields of activities, viz. art, social work, public affairs, science and engineering, trade and industry, medicine, literature and education, sports, civil service, etc. ‘Padma Vibhushan’ is awarded for exceptional and distinguished service; ‘Padma Bhushan’ for distinguished service of high order and ‘Padma Shri’ for distinguished service in any field. The awards are announced on the occasion of Republic Day every year.
These awards are conferred by the President of India at ceremonial functions which are held at Rashtrapati Bhawan usually around March/ April every year. This year the President of India has approved conferment of 141 Padma Awards including four duo case (in a duo case, the Award is counted as one). The list comprises seven Padma Vibhushan, 16 Padma Bhushan and 118 Padma Shri Awards. Thirty four of the awardees are women and the list also includes 18 persons from the category of foreigners/NRI/PIO/OCI and 12 posthumous awardees