Difference Between Bharat Ratna and Padma Awards

By Sudheer Kumar K|Updated : January 27th, 2021

In this article, we will be highlighting the difference between Bharat Ratna and Padma awards. Bharat Ratna is the highest Civilian Award conferred by the Government of India for an exceptional service/performance of the highest order. Padma Awards are the next highest civilian Awards in line.            

S. No.

Bharata Ratna

Padma Awards


The Highest civilian Award.

The next highest civilian Awards after Bharat Ratna:

· Padma Vibhushan (2nd Highest Award for exceptional and distinguished service)

· Padma Bhushan (3rd Highest Award distinguished service of higher-order) &

· Padma Shri (4th Highest Award distinguished service).




It is awarded in recognition of exceptional service/performance of the highest order in any field of human endeavour.

The award seeks to recognize works of distinction and is given for distinguished and exceptional achievements/service in all fields of activities/disciplines. 


The recommendations for Bharat Ratna are made by the Prime Minister to the President of India.

The awards are conferred on the recommendations of Padma Awards Committee, which is constituted by the Prime Minister every year.


No formal recommendations for Bharat Ratna are necessary.

State governments, UT Governments, Chief Ministers, Members of Parliament, private individuals and bodies etc. can send the recommendation to the Padma Awards Committee.



The number of Bharat Ratna Awards is restricted to a maximum of three in a particular year.

It is varied. The 2021 list comprises 7 Padma Vibhushan, 10 Padma Bhushan and 102 Padma Shri Awards. The higher the award, the lesser the number of people to be conferred.

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