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K. G. Ramanathan
K. G. Ramanathan

There were 133 recipients of the Padma Bhushan from 1980 to 1989. The Padma Bhushan is the third-highest civilian award of the Republic of India. Instituted on 2 January 1954, the award is given for "distinguished service of a high order", without distinction of race, occupation, position or sex. The recipients receive a Sanad, a certificate signed by the President of India and a circular-shaped medallion with no monetary association. Only one award was conferred in 1980, which was later followed by nine in 1981, fifteen in 1982, seventeen in both 1983 and 1984, twenty-one in 1985, fourteen in 1986, twelve in 1987, thirteen in 1988 and fourteen in 1989. The Padma Bhushan was also conferred upon ten foreign recipients in the 1980s – four from the United Kingdom, three from the United States and one each from Denmark, France and Japan. Individuals from nine different fields were awarded, which include twenty-eight from literature and education (1983 recipient K. G. Ramanathan pictured), twenty-five from the civil services and twenty-three artists. (Full list...)

Part of the Padma Bhushan series, one of Wikipedia's featured topics.

Today's featured picture

Polar bear

The polar bear (Ursus maritimus) is a hypercarnivorous bear whose native range lies largely within the Arctic Circle, encompassing the Arctic Ocean, its surrounding seas and surrounding land masses. A boar (adult male) weighs around 350–750 kilograms (770–1,650 lb), while a sow (adult female) is about half that size. Polar bears are the largest land carnivores currently in existence, rivalled only by the omnivorous Kodiak bear. Although it is the sister species of the brown bear, it has evolved to occupy a narrower ecological niche, with many body characteristics adapted for cold temperatures, for moving across snow, ice and open water, as well as for hunting seals, which make up most of its diet. Although most polar bears are born on land, they spend most of their time on sea ice. The species's scientific name, which is derived from this fact, means 'maritime bear'. Because of their dependence on sea ice, polar bears are categorized as marine mammals. Due to expected habitat loss caused by global warming, the polar bear is classified as a vulnerable species. For decades, large-scale hunting raised international concern for the future of the species, but populations have rebounded after controls and quotas began to take effect.

This picture shows a polar bear on an ice floe north of Svalbard, Norway, feeding on a bearded seal.

Photograph credit: Andreas Weith

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