Six-time World Champion Mary Kom will be conferred the Padma Vibhushan, the country’s highest civilian award while PV Sindhu, the highest-ranked Indian shuttler in singles competition will be awarded the Padma Bhushan, the government announced Saturday.
Mary, member of Rajya Sabha, is India’s most decorated boxer having won six World Championship gold medals to go with two bronze medals. She became the first Indian woman boxer to get a Gold Medal in the Asian Games in 2014 and is the first Indian woman boxer to win gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
At the 2012 London Olympics, Mary won a bronze medal in the 2012 London Olympics, losing to Nicola Adams of UK in the semi-final. In 2006, Mary won the Padma Shri, followed by the prestigious Padma Bhushan seven years later in 2013.
Boxing Federation of India president Ajay Singh on Saturday congratulated the celebrated boxer.
“I extend my heartiest congratulations to Mary Kom on being conferred the Padma Vibhushan. Mary is an inspiration not only for the young girls and boys in the country but for all of us. Her contribution to boxing in India is unparalleled,” Singh said. I wish her the very best and hope she betters her Olympic record. This is a very well deserved recognition. More power to you, Mary!”
Sindhu, a silver medal winner at the 2016 Rio Olympics is ranked three in the BWF women’s singles competition. Last year, she created history to become the first Indian to win badminton World Championships gold by beating familiar rival Nozomi Okuhara in a fairly one-sided clash.
Two years after being robbed off the gold by Okuhara in an epic 110-minute final at Glasgow that went down as one of the greatest battles in badminton history, Sindhu triumphed over her opponent to win the summit clash a resounding 21-7, 21-7
Along with Mary and Sindhu, six other sportspersons will be bestowed upon the Padma Shri, namely former India pacer Zaheer Khan, captain of India women’s hockey team Rani Rampal, former men’s hockey player MP Ganesh, ace shooter Jitu Rai, archer Tarundeep Rai and former Indian women’s football team captain Oinam Bembem Devi.