"Vajpayee jee should have been bestowed with Bharat Ratna during UPA government itself. I strongly support Bharat Ratna for Vajpayee jee," he told reporters emerging from Legislative Council where he is a member now.
The JD(U) leader, who made his party sever ties with BJP over elevation of Narendra Modi in June last year, criticised the BJP government announcement to celebrate Vajpayee's birthday as "sushan diwas" (good governance day).
"Just taking his name is not enough. Celebration could come only when the present government followed ideals of Vajpayee jee," he said.
He recalled Vajpayee asking Modi, who was then Gujarat Chief Minister, to follow "Raj Dharma" in the wake of Godhra riots.