(Image source from: Business Standard)
India’s 13th President Pranab Mukherjee was awarded Bharat Ratna on Thursday evening at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Apart from Pranab Mukherjee, one of the founding members of Bharatiya Jan Sangh and social activist Nanaji Deshmukh too was awarded Bharat Ratna, posthumously. Renowned singer Bhupen Hazarika was also honored with Bharat Ratna.
Mukherjee was presented with the award by President Ram Nath Kovind. He had been selected for India's highest civilian award in January of 2019. The announcement had been made in a statement issued by the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had already congratulated Mukherjee for his decades of service to the country. "Pranab Da is an outstanding statesman of our times. He has served the nation selflessly and tirelessly for decades, leaving a strong imprint on the nation’s growth trajectory. His wisdom and intellect have few parallels. Delighted that he has been conferred the Bharat Ratna," he had tweeted.
Mukherjee served as the President of the country between 2012 and 2017.
Born on December 11, 1935, to a Bengali family in Mirati, a village in Birbhum district in West Bengal, Mukherjee completed his History and LLB Degree and Masters in Political Science from University of Calcutta. In his five decades political career, Mukherjee held various key posts in the Indian National Congress as well as in the governments led by Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, P V Narasimha Rao, and Manmohan Singh.
By Sowmya Sangam