Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Home Affairs
27-January-2010 16:45 IST
Clarification regarding conferment of Padma Bhushan on Sant Singh Chatwal
Attention has been drawn to some reports appearing in the print and electronic media about the conferment of the Padma Bhushan award on Shri Sant Singh Chatwal.

Shri Sant Singh Chatwal is a tireless advocate of India’s interests in USA and has been working relentlessly for strengthening bilateral relationships between India and the United States. He is Trustee of William J. Clinton Foundation which focuses on critical global issues such as health care, climate change and economic empowerment of the underprivileged in the world community. He is also founder trustee of the American India Foundation and has made frequent trips to India to provide relief to victims of Tsunami and AIDS. He is also a prominent leader of the Indian-American community. Shri Chatwal has distinguished himself in the hospitality sector and been an active member of the NRI community in the USA in securing support for the nuclear deal among the members of the Congress of the United States. Shri Chatwal is a recipient of the Rajiv Gandhi Award 2005. He was honoured by the National Jewish Outreach Programme in New York in 2001 and with the ‘Order of the Khalsa’ by the Government of Punjab in 1999.

As regards the allegations against Shri Chatwal, it is clarified that between 1992 and 1994, CBI had registered five cases against Shri Chatwal and some bank officials for conniving with the intention to defraud the Bank of Baroda and Bank of India. Three of these cases were closed by CBI itself while charge sheets were filed by the CBI in two cases before the Court of Special Judge, CBI, Mumbai. In these two cases also, the Court discharged Shri Chatwal. As per available reports, there is nothing adverse on record against Shri Chatwal.

Padma Awards are conferred only after consideration in terms of the guidelines regulating the award and after observance of established and elaborate procedures. A ‘due diligence’ exercise is undertaken in respect of each awardee in consultation with appropriate agencies before announcement of the award. No Padma award is conferred except on the recommendation of the Awards Committee constituted for the purpose and after the due diligence has been done.