Do you think Sachin deserves Bharat Ratna?

sachin and bharat ratna

India’s most celebrated sportsman, Sachin Tendulkar was conferred the highest Civilian Award Bharat Ratna soon after he bid adieu to the international Cricket after playing for 24 years. Though India’s Hockey Icon Late Dhyan Chand’s name was also recommended, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh recommended only Sachin’s name to the President to confer the Award.

The hurry the ruling congress party has shown to confer the award to Sachin has raised many eyebrows . Considering the fact that the upcoming general elections played a part in the decision, the general criticism was more focused on leaving more deserving candidates. If we take a closer look at the recipients of this award, in previous years, it becomes clear that all is not quite right with the award conferring process.

The awardees who recommended themselves for Bharat Ratna

This is one award where there is no jury. The prime minister recommends a name and the president has to confer. In 1955 Jawaharlal Nehru was conferred Bharat Ratna. Undoubtedly, he is one of the most deserving candidates. But it is also noteworthy that Jawaharlal was the Prime Minister of India during that period. Effectively that makes him the first person to confer the highest civilian award in the country to himself.

Sixteen years later, the history repeated itself when his daughter took the decision to confer the award to herself. In 1971, apart from the Bangladesh war victory,then  the one term Prime Minister of India had nothing much to count for achievements.

In 1991, the assassinated Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was recommended by then Prime Minister Chandra Sekhar for the Award. Chandra Sekhar’s decision was the result of his desire to keep his Prime Ministership by joining Congress Party . Unfortunately for Sekhar nothing went as per Plan.

Political Considerations played a larger part, when M.G.Ramachandran was awarded the honour posthumously.

Bharat Ratna stipulated it was to be conferred “for the highest degrees of national service. This service includes artistic, literary, and scientific achievements, as well as “recognition of public service of the highest order.” In December 2011, the Government of India modified the criteria to allow sportspersons to receive the award; since then, the award may be conferred “for performance of highest order in any field of human endeavour.”

Comparing Sachin with other recipients may make the little master look much shorter. Apart from playing the most popular game in India, the otherwise quiet and controversy averse Sachin has nothing much to boast about.

List of Bharat Ratna Recipients

1.            Chakravarti Rajgopalachari  –       1954

2.            C. V. Raman  –  1954

3.            Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan              –              1954

4.            Bhagwan Das  –                 1955

5.            Mokshagundam Visvesvarayya  – 1955

6.            Jawaharlal Nehru  – 1955

7.            Govind Ballabh Pant  -1957

8.            Dhondo Keshav Karve   – 1958

9.            Bidhan Chandra Roy  – 1961

10.          Purushottam Das Tandon  – 1961

11.          Rajendra Prasad  – 1962

12.          Zakir Hussain –  1963

13.          Pandurang Vaman Kane  – 1963

14.          Lal Bahadur Shastri  – 1966

15.          Indira Gandhi – 1971

16.          V. V. Giri  – 1975

17.          K. Kamaraj  –       1976

18.          Mother Teresa MotherTeresa – 1980

19.          Vinoba Bhave    – 1983

20.          Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan – 1987

21.          M. G. Ramachandran – 1988

22.          B. R. Ambedkar                 Ambedkar – 1990

23.          Nelson Mandela – 1990

24.          Rajiv Gandhi – 1991

25.          Vallabhbhai Patel – 1991

26.          Morarji Desai – 1991

27.          Abul Kalam Azad -1992

28.          J. R. D. Tata – 1992

29.          Satyajit Ray –      1992

30.          A. P. J. Abdul Kalam –      1997

31.          Gulzarilal Nanda -1997

32.          Aruna Asaf Ali – 1997

33.          M. S. Subbulakshmi – 1998

34.          Chidambaram Subramaniam -1998

35.          Jayaprakash Narayan – 1998

36.          Ravi Shankar – 1999

37.          Amartya Sen –   1999

38.          Gopinath Bordoloi  – 1999

39.          Lata Mangeshkar – 2001

40.          Bismillah Khan – 2001

41.          Bhimsen Joshi – 2008

42.          C. N. R. Rao  – 2014

43.          Sachin Tendulkar –           2014

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