List of Major Awards and Honours in India

List of Awards and Honours

In this blog post, we will take a look at the most important awards and honours in India. Recognizing and rewarding the contributions of individuals in various fields is an integral part of India’s rich tradition.

At Rau’s IAS Study Circle, we believe that an understanding of India’s major awards and honours is essential for the aspirants preparing for the UPSC Civil Services Examination.

List of Awards and Honours

This knowledge can be useful in both the Preliminary and Mains stages of the examination.

Bharat Ratna

The Bharat Ratna is India’s highest civilian award. Instituted in 1954, it recognizes exceptional service or performance of the highest order in any field of human endeavour.

Notable recipients include Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, Sir C. V. Raman, Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam, and Sachin Tendulkar.

Padma Awards

The Padma Awards, instituted in 1954, are among the highest civilian honours in India. They are announced annually on Republic Day. The awards are given in three categories:

Padma Vibhushan: For exceptional and distinguished service.

Padma Bhushan: For distinguished service of a high order.

Padma Shri: For distinguished service in any field.

Gallantry Awards

Gallantry awards are presented for exceptional bravery, valor and leadership on the battlefield. They include:

Param Vir Chakra (PVC): It is India’s highest military decoration awarded for the highest degree of valor or self-sacrifice in the presence of the enemy.

Maha Vir Chakra (MVC): It is the second-highest military decoration in India and is awarded for acts of conspicuous gallantry.

Vir Chakra: It is the third-highest military decoration in India.

Jnanpith Award

The Jnanpith Award is India’s highest literary honour. It is presented annually by the Bharatiya Jnanpith organization to an author for their “outstanding contribution towards literature.”

Dadasaheb Phalke Award

The Dadasaheb Phalke Award is India’s highest award in the field of cinema. It is presented annually at the National Film Awards ceremony by the Directorate of Film Festivals.

Arjuna Award and Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna

The Arjuna Awards are given by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports to recognize outstanding achievement in sports. The Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna is the highest sporting honour of India.


A comprehensive understanding of the major awards and honours in India is vital for aspirants preparing for the UPSC Civil Services Exam.

Rau’s IAS Study Circle encourages aspirants to regularly update their knowledge in this area, as it not only enriches their understanding of the various fields in which individuals are contributing to the nation but also provides fodder points for the Mains examination.

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