Rajnath Singh thanks PM Modi for conferring Bharat Ratna on BJP stalwart LK Advani

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NEW DELHI: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for conferring the Bharat Ratna on former Union Minister L K Advani and said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) stalwart has strengthened the country and democracy through his parliamentary and administrative abilities.

Taking to the social media platform, X, the Defence Minister said that Advani Ji also played an important role in keeping the unity and integrity of India intact.

“The decision to award Bharat Ratna to the revered Lal Krishna Advani ji, an inspiration to all of us and a senior leader of the country, has brought great joy and happiness. He is a symbol of purity, dedication and determination in politics. The significant contribution that Advani ji has made to the country’s development and nation-building in various roles during his long public life is unforgettable and inspiring. He has also played an important role in keeping the unity and integrity of India intact. As a national leader, he has strengthened the country and democracy through his scholarship, parliamentary and administrative abilities. It is a matter of joy for every Indian to receive the honor of Bharat Ratna. I thank Prime Minister Shri @narendramodiji for this decision and congratulate Advaniji”, Singh wrote on X.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath also congratulated the BJP veteran leader on the award saying that Advani was an inspiration to all.

“The decision to honor the Bharat Ratna to respected Shri Lal Krishna Advani, founding member of the Bharatiya Janata Party, source of inspiration for countless workers and former Deputy Prime Minister, is in recognition of his decades of service, commitment and unwavering commitment towards the integrity of the nation in public life and political career. This is going to honor his unique efforts in setting high standards of purity and morality. His tireless efforts towards national integration and cultural revival are a source of unique inspiration for all of us. Hearty congratulations to respected Advani ji!” Yogi Adityanath said.

Earlier in the day, PM Modi announced that LK Advani will be conferred the country’s highest civilian honour.

“I am very happy to share that Shri LK Advani Ji will be conferred the Bharat Ratna. I also spoke to him and congratulated him on being conferred this honour. One of the most respected statesmen of our times, his contribution to the development of India is monumental. His is a life that started from working at the grassroots to serving the nation as our Deputy Prime Minister. He distinguished himself as our Home Minister and I&B Minister as well. His Parliamentary interventions have always been exemplary, full of rich insights,” PM posted on X.

Born in Karachi in present-day Pakistan, on November 8, 1927, Advani through the years had served as the President of the Bharatiya Janata Party for the longest period since its inception in 1980. Capping a parliamentary career of nearly three decades, he was, first, the Home Minister and, later, the Deputy Prime Minister in the cabinet of Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee (1999-2004).

Advani is widely regarded as an individual of great intellectual ability, strong principles, and unwavering support for the idea of a strong and prosperous India. As confirmed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Advani has ‘never compromised on his core belief in nationalism, and yet has displayed flexibility in political responses whenever it was demanded by the situation’.

The veteran leader’s celebration of India’s independence from the British in 1947 was sadly short lived as he became one of the millions to be torn from his homeland amidst the terror and bloodshed of the tragedy of India’s partition. These events, however, did not turn him bitter or cynical but instead spurred him on in his desire to create a more secular India. With this goal in mind he journeyed to Rajasthan to continue his work as an RSS Pracharak.

Through the latter half of the 1980s and the 1990s, LK Advani focused on the singular task of building the BJP into a national political force. The results of his efforts were underscored by the 1989 General Election. The party bounced back from its 1984 tally of 2 to achieve an impressive 86 seats.

The party position moved up to 121 seats in 1992 and 161 in 1996; making the 1996 elections a watershed in Indian democracy. For the first time since independence, the Congress was dethroned from its preeminent position, and the BJP became the single largest party in the Lok Sabha. (ANI)

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