Padmabhushan stands third in the hierarchy of civilian honors, after the Bharat Ratna
and the Padma Vibhushan, but before the Padmashree
. It was established by the President of India in January 1954. The award is conferred to recognize distinguished service of a high order to the nation, in any field.
The award has the same design as Padma Vibhushan. On the obverse of the medal, the word 'Padma' appears above and the word 'Bhushan' below the emblem of the lotus flower. The inscription 'Padma Bhushan' on the obverse, the geometrical pattern on either side and the border around the periphery are in burnished bronze. Embossing on either side of the decoration is in standard gold. On the reverse, in the center there is the national emblem, with motto below, in white gold.