Weeks after the consecration ceremony of the Ram temple at the site of the demolished Babri mosque, former Prime Minister and late Congress politician PV Narasimha Rao was awarded the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award. Rao was the prime minister during the demolition of the Babri mosque and was heavily criticized for his inaction at that time.
On Friday, Bharat Ratna was also conferred on former Prime Minister Chaudhary Charan Singh as well as agricultural scientist MS Swaminathan. Announcing the three awards on social media platform X, Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded their many contributions to the country.
The announcement comes days after 96-year-old BJP stalwart and Hindutva politician LK Advani and two-time Bihar chief minister and socialist icon Karpoori Thakur (posthumously) were conferred with the highest civilian honour.
The hardcore Hindutva politician who is infamous for his RSS-led anti-Muslim campaigns, had launched his Rath Yatra, on September 25, 1990, to build support for the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya. In the aftermath, Babri Masjid was demolished and Hundreds of Muslims were killed.