Should sportspersons be considered for awarding Bharat Ratna?
File notings accessed through RTI has revealed that the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is not in favour of widening the scope of India's highest civilian honour Bharat Ratna to include the sport persons as eligible persons. The MHA fears that broadening the scope of Bharat Ratna would open floodgates for similar demands from other vocations like social work, industry and the likes and has argued for keeping the norms untouched.
Two-time Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar criticised the view and said “No Bharat Ratna for sportspersons would have been a wrong decision on the part of the union government. It would have hurt the feelings of our athletes who put their blood, sweat and tears”. The president of Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) and Samajwadi Party MP Brij Bhushan Sharan has condemned the move of MHA.