The yogi was a show of simplicity and grace as he knelt and bowed down in front of the Prime Minister and President as a mark of respect.
The oldest man to be conferred the Padma Shri award ever received the recognition from President Ram Nath Kovind on Monday amid applause from onlookers. The 125-year-old Swami Sivananda clad in white kurta and dhoti walked bare feet inside the Rashtrapati Bhavan’s magnificent Darbar Hall as cheers rang in loud. Padma Awards, one of the highest civilian Awards of the country, were conferred on Monday.
The yogi was a show of simplicity and grace as he knelt and bowed down in front of the Prime Minister and President as a mark of respect. Prime Minister Narendra Modi got up from his seat and bowed in return to the veteran yoga legend who at the age of 125 stands strong enough to perform yoga and live life without any medical complications yet.
The President too helped Sivananda rose to his pedestal and honoured him with the award. The duo was next seen in conversation before they posed for pictures.
Swami Sivananda is a monk from Varanasi, born in August 1896. Despite his distinctive age, he wakes up at 3 am every day and abides by an undeviating routine. Sivananda adheres to a disciplined and strict lifestyle as he sleeps on a mat on the floor and uses a wooden slab as a pillow. He practices yoga religiously, leads a simple life san any comfort, eats a simple diet, and serves people selflessly.
Yogi Sivananda lost his parents at the young age of 6. Having faced poverty since childhood he is accustomed to sleeping empty stomach. His family most of the time has fed him just boiled rice and water. Swami denied the last rites of his parents and chose the path of celibacy. He was sent to an Ashram in Nabadwip in West Bengal where he was brought up by guru Omkarananda Goswami. His guruji imparted him all practical and spiritual knowledge and learning of yoga. Swami Sivananda has traveled to 34 countries including Russia, Europe, and Australia.
This year the President has approved conferment of 128 Padma Awards including two duo cases, the announcement for which was made on Republic Day 2022. This year the list comprises 4 Padma Vibhushan, 17 Padma Bhushan, and 107 Padma Shri awards. 34 women were included in the list of recipients. The list also includes 10 persons from the category of Foreigners/NRI/PIO/OCI and 13 posthumous awardees.