Bharat Ratna for Vajpayee and Malaviya

First political leader to receive India’s highest civilian award

GN Bureau | December 24, 2014




Former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and prominent national leader Madan Mohan Malaviya will be honoured with the Bharat Ratna.

The announcement of India's highest civilian award comes a day before the birthday of the veteran BJP leader, who turns 90 on Thursday. A Bharat Ratna for Malaviya, the freedom icon and founder of Banaras Hindu University, was one of the promises made by prime minister Narendra Modi.

A statement from the president’s office said, "The President has been pleased to award Bharat Ratna to Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya (posthumously) and to Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee." In keeping with the new trend of keeping the virtual world in loop, the president’s office also tweeted the announcement.


The Bharat Ratna Award, instituted in 1954, recognises "exceptional service or performance of the highest order." The awardees receive a certificate or Sanad signed by the President and a peepal-leaf shaped medallion, but no cash award. 43 people have been honoured with the Bharat Ratna till now.

The BJP has long demanded the Bharat Ratna for Vajpayee. The party had strongly criticised the previous Congress-led government when cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar and eminent scientist CNR Rao were named last year for the award but Vajpayee wasn't.

The three-time prime minister is the first political leader, especially from the political right, to be given a Bharat Ratna.  He led the first NDA government as the 11th Prime Minister of India, first for 13 days in 1996 and then from 1998 to 2004.

There is a political consensus on Bharat Ratna for Vajpayee. Bharatiya Janata Party veteran LK Advani had backed Vajpayee's name for the Bharat Ratna calling him a true patriot. He said, "A Bharat Ratna for Atal Bihari Vajpayee should not be seen in terms of a reward for doing his duty but as an award that recognises his stature. It would be very appropriate and befitting for a patriot like Vajpayee."

Outgoing Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah had also backed the demand and said the UPA government should have conferred the country's highest civilian honour on the former prime minister.

 

Comments

 

Other News

Lohani is new chairman of railway board

Air India CMD Ashwani Lohani was appointed the Chairman of Railway Board on Wednesday after incumbent AK Mital put in his papers. Mital tendered his resignation to railway minister Suresh Prabhu following two derailments in Uttar Pradesh.   Lohani, a 1980-batch office

Land swap proposal between AAI and MMRDA approved

 The government on Wednesday gave its approval for transfer of 40 acres of Airports Authority of India’s (AAI) land at Dahisar to Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) for its metro shed, swapping with 40 acres of Maharashtra government land at Gorai in Mumbai.  

Loss making Bharat Wagon and Engineering Co. to be shut

 Ministry of railways’ proposal of closing down Bharat Wagon and Engineering Company Limited (BWEL)  has been accepted by the cabinet committee on economic affairs, chaired by the prime minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday.   A total of 626 employees of BWEL will b

Suresh Prabhu hints he wants to quit, Railway board chief resigns

Railway minister Suresh Prabhu on Wednesday dropped a hint that he has offered to resign while Chairman Railway Board AK Mital tendered his resignation following two major train accidents.   The resignation offers come just three days after three top railway officials were se

EESL becomes world’s largest street light company

 Around 30 lakh LED street lights, spread across 50,000 km of roads, have been installed across the country under the centre’s street lighting national programme (SLNP). With this, Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), under ministry of power, has become the world’s largest street lig

Soil Health Cards scheme moves at snail’s pace

An ambitious scheme to provide Soil Health Cards for 14 crore land holdings spread across the country seems to be moving at a painfully slow pace.   Prime minister Narendra Modi on August 21 reviewed the progress and he was informed that 16 States/UTs have completed the first



Video

Prabhu offer to resign

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter