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Padma Bhushan raises the bar for Devi Shetty

Bangalore, January 25 2012, DHNS: 0:20 IST
Dr Devi Prasad Shetty, Chairman of Narayana Hrudayalaya, who has been honoured with the Padma Bhushan award, is already a recipient of Padma Shri, awarded in 2004.

He has also received the Dr B C Roy award, Sir M Visvesvaraya Memorial Award, Rajyotsava award and Karnataka Ratna award.

“I am excited, indeed very excited,” was Dr Shetty’s reaction to the news. He said the recognition by the government will strengthen his resolve to implement two programmes for the public. Dr Shetty will aim for a health insurance for all the poor in the country. “We have 750 million Indians spending Rs 150 per month just on mobile phone charges. All we need is Rs 10 out of this to ensure a health insurance programme,” he said. The second on his list is to enrol 2,000 children from rural India into medical colleges every year.

Dr Ullas Karanth, who has conducted ground-breaking research on the ecology of tigers and other large mammals, is the other prominent Padma Bhushan awardee from the State.

The first person to conduct radio-telemetry of tigers in India, Karanth founded the Centre for Wildlife Studies and is a senior scientist with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), New York, since 1988. He has published over 135 international peer-reviewed scientific papers and popular articles, and authored seven books in English and Kannada.

He serves on the Union Government's Forest Advisory Committee, National Tiger Conservation Authority and Karnataka Government's Tiger Conservation Foundation and Tiger Steering Committee.

Karanth’s contribution to wildlife conservation has been recognised through several prestigious awards: the Sierra Club's International EarthCare award (2006); World Wildlife Fund's J Paul Getty Award (2007) and the Bombay Natural History Society's Salim Ali National Award for Conservation (2008). He was also elected a member of the Indian Academy of Sciences in 2008. He received the Karnataka Government’s Rajyotsava Award in 2011.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Dr Karanth said that he is happy receiving the award. “ I am happy because wildlife conservation is receiving recognition. Such recognitions will help articulate our view,” he said.

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