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Nalanda's 70-year-old handloom artist conferred with Padma Shri

Nalanda: Kapildev Prasad, a 70-year-old resident Bihar's Nalanda, has been conferred with the prestigious Padma Shri award after being associated with the textile industry for almost 60 years.
On the eve of Republic Day, the country's highest honour 'Padma Shri' was announced by the President. Kapil Dev Prasad, who was living a life of anonymity till now, has suddenly come into the limelight. "I am very overwhelmed to receive this honour. This honour is not only for me but for all those people who are associated with handlooms. In fact, the identity of Nalanda is linked with this honour," Kapil Dev Prasad said after the announcement of the Padma Shri award.
Kapil Dev Prasad was born in 1954. His family occupation has been handloom.
"My grandfather also used to make 'Bawan Buti sarees' through handloom and later my father also adopted the same business. For the last 60 years, I am associated with handloom and now my only son also helps in handloom work," he added.
Kapil Dev Prasad comes from a small village named Basman Bigha village which is located 3 kilometres east-north of Nalanda district headquarters in Bihar.
Apparently, he has also applied for a geographical indication (GI) tag for Bawan Booti sarees.
Kapil Dev Prasad said that after getting a GI tagging for the Bawan Buti saree, its identity will be linked to Nalanda.
"The history of the handicraft Bawan Buti saree has been associated with the Buddhist period. Tasar and cotton clothes are prepared by hand and Bawan Buti is designed in it. Bawan Buti is associated with Buddhism. It is also said that the art of Buddhism is engraved in the Bawan Buti saree," he said.
There are 106 names on the list of Padma Awardees this year, including three duo cases.
In a duo case, the award is counted as one. The list comprises six Padma Vibhushan, nine Padma Bhushan and 91 Padma Shri Awards. Nineteen awardees are women and the list also includes two persons from the category of Foreigners/NRI/PIO/OCI and seven posthumous awardees.
The Padma Awards, which were instituted in 1954, are one of the highest civilian honours of India announced annually on the eve of Republic Day. The Awards are given in three categories-- Padma Vibhushan (for exceptional and distinguished service), Padma Bhushan (distinguished service of higher order) and Padma Shri (distinguished service). The award seeks to recognize achievements in all fields of activities or disciplines where an element of public service is involved.
The Padma Awards are conferred on the recommendations made by 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. (ANI)

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