President of India Pratibha Patil will be conferring the Padma Awards to the selected recipients on March 31 at a function in Rashtrapati Bhavan -- a senior official from the president's office confirmed this.
" The award ceremony will be held in two parts this year, as some of them have expressed their inability to reach Delhi for the March 31 function," the official told rediff.com conversation late last night.
Asked if controversial New York-based hotelier Sant Singh Chatwal, who has also been selected for the award, would be present, the official source said, "We will be able to confirm to you who is coming and who is not only a week before the function."
Chatwal had been earlier chargesheeted for financial irregularities by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
While many political parties protested against Chattwal's nomination as he is a non-resident Indian and that he was close to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.Over 100 individuals have been recommended for the Padma awards by the Union home ministry this year.