Bharat Ratna for Vajpayee, Netaji: Top civilian award mustn’t be politicised

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Atal bihari Vajpayee
Narendra Modi Government is contemplating to bestow Bharat Ratna award to a number of political leaders across political spectrum. The name includes one of the tallest BJP leader and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and BSP leader Kanshi Ram.

The notable freedom fighters like Subhas Chandra Bose, Madan Mohan Malviya and hockey legend hockey player Major Dhyanchand's names are also doing the round.

Reports say that announcement regarding India's highest civilian award could be made on the Independence Day itself.

Controversy erupts every time
But it is rarest of the rare case when an award doesn't rakes up controversy in India. The past is full of such examples.

Though the decision of the new dispensation is laudable one, but it is bound to invite salvo from various critiques. The reason being that, it is yet not clear what exactly constitutes "exceptional service/performance' which qualifies one to get the award.

Presently the award is given to those extra ordinary persons who really deserve to be called ‘Ratna of Bharat'. When the award was started in 1954, it used to be given for exceptional service in the field of art, science and public services.

But UPA government in 2011 tweaked the established rule and all form of human behaviour was included in the purview of the award.

Objection from various quarters

Meanwhile, Netaji's kin has raised objection saying his stature is above the award and the mystery around his death must be reveled first. Chandra Kumar Bose, Netaji's grandnephew said, "Netaji has been missing since 1945.

When you award him with Bharat Ratna posthumously, you have to say when he died, but where is the evidence? The best way to honour him is to declassify government files which can reveal the truth behind his disappearance".

Stirring the hornet's nest, Congress leader Manish Tiwari has said that other names like Bhagat Singh, Rajguru, Sukhdev, Annie Besant and A.O. Hume also should be included in the lists.

BJP attacked Congress for not acknowledging Atal Bihari

BJP had been attacking Congress leadership for not conferring the award to its top leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee. The right wing party had even promised to do the honour once it will attain the power.

Last year when highest civilian award was announced for cricket icon Sachin and scientist CNR Rao, the law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had said, " I am raising a question that why Atal Bihari Vajpayee has not been awarded Bharat Ratna? He contributed in the formation of Chhattisgarh and he was the most popular Prime Minister".

Minister also lashed out at dynast party for deliberately delaying this award to Iron Man of India Sardar Patel. The first post quoted him, "Sardar Patel was a 'ratna' (gem) of the country. He died in 1950 while award was conferred on him in 1991.

Why 41 years of delay in giving the award? Between that period Jawahar Lal Nehru was (PM) for 17 years, Indira Gandhi for 16 years and Rajiv Gandhi for 5 years, and Bharat Ratna was given to several people, then why Patel was given after 41 years?" Prasad asked.

Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also slammed erstwhile Government for acknowledging Sardar patel so late. "Ironically, Sardar saheb has not got his dues from the same party to which he devoted his entire life.

"What could be more unfortunate than the fact that Sardar Patel was honoured with Bharat Ratna in 1991, a full 41 years after his demise?" Modi had said during election campaigning.

Congress politicised the award?
Dynasty party has no moral right at all to give their opinion about whom to be awarded. It's previous Prime Ministers i.e Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi rewarded themselves with the award during their tenure.

Not only that even cricketer Sachin Tendulkar was awarded in the last moment superseding legend hockey player Major Dhyanchand by the party in 2013. According to a report by Mumbaiwalla, Congress leadership had taken this decision in very last moment with the motive to cash in on public sentiment ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

It is bitter truth that Congress party is obsessed with Nehru, Indira and other Gandhi clan. There is no culture of showing respect to others in Congress. Sachin was awarded just to get votes in its kitty and respect was least in their mind. In past, Congress leaders had also vociferously advocated that singer Lata Mangeshkar should return her awards for her opinion on Narendra Modi. She had said that it was her dream to see Modi as the Prime Minister

Freedom fighters are above the award?
Though acknowledging is good thing but truth of the matter is that an award can't recognize the true sacrifice of these brave souls.

It is fact that no award can match the stature of freedom fighters like Subhas Chandra Bose, Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev. They are just above of that.

Highest civilian award must not be politicised
It has been proven fact now that Narendra Modi always keeps country's interest above all. He is also known for his advocacy that national heritage and its vast culture must be preserved at any cost.

So this time also BJP government mustn't do anything which will put their credibility at stake overnight. The award must be bestowed keeping high respect in mind not vote banks on top of the priority.

It's time to honour real gem of the country but reason must be strong enough so that no one could raise point of figure at new dispensation.

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