Bharat Ratna Likely for Atal Bihari Vajpayee

vajpayeeNEW DELHI : The BJP-led union government may announce its decision to confer the Bharat Ratna Award for former prime minister and veteran party leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee, said sources.The BJP has long demanded that the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian honour, be conferred to Mr Vajpayee, who had led the first BJP-led government at the Centre between 1999 and 2004.
There may be more than one recipient of the prestigious honour this year, said sources.The names of freedom fighter Madan Mohan Malviya and Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, Dalit leader and founder of Bahujan Samaj Party Kanshi Ram and legendary hockey player Dhyanchand are also being considered for the honour, they said.
The Home Ministry has asked the Reserve Bank of India to keep five Bharat Ratna medallions ready, said sources, adding that the number of medallions may not necessarily be the same as the number of recipients.  The UPA government had this year conferred the Bharat Ratna to master blaster Sachin Tendulkar and eminent scientist Professor CNR Rao.

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