S B Chavan also for burgeoning Bharat Ratna race

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{image-bharat ratna_17012008.jpg www.oneindia.com}Solapur, Jan 17: The clamour for Bharat Ratna grew louder with the name of former Union Home Minister and veteran Congress leader from Maharashtra S B Chavan's name joining the burgeoning list of aspirants for the highest civilian honour. Congress legislator from Kandhar Pratap Chikhlikar proposed the name of the visionary Congressman from the Marathwada region while talking to reporters at Beed last night.

He said Chavan, besides being a respected politician, was an astute administrator. He held several high posts, including that of Union Home Minister, Defence Minister and had been Chief Minister of Maharashtra twice. In the wake of his immense contribution in diverse fields Bharat Ratna should be conferred on Chavan posthumously, Mr Chikhlikar demanded.

Following senior BJP leader L K Advani's proposal to confer the highest civilian honour on former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, several political parties joined the chorus suggesting their aspirants for Bharat Ratna.

BSP supremo and UP Chief Minister Mayawati suggested her mentor and party founder Kanshi Ram, the CPI(M) proposed party patriach and former West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu (though Mr Basu denied he was in the running) and the Samajwadi Janata Party proposed its chief and former Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar.

The RLD gave the name of kisan leader and former prime minister Charan Singh, the RJD backed veteran socialist leader and former Bihar Chief Minister Karpoori Thakur and the Lok Janshakti Party proposed social reformer Mahatma Jyotirao Phule, former Defence Minister and prominent Dalit leader Jagjivan Ram and prominent singer Mohd Rafi.

Delhi Assembly's Deputy Speaker Shoaib Iqbal went a step further and proposed the name of last Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar.

UNI

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