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Karpoori Thakur to get Bharat Ratna: All you need to know about Bihar's former CM

Ramnath Thakur, son of Karpoori Thakur, acknowledged the honour, stating it is the result of 36 years of dedicated service. Expressed thanks on behalf of his family and Bihar's 15 crore residents.

Edited By: Nitin Kumar @Niitz1 Patna Updated on: January 23, 2024 20:54 IST
Karpoori Thakur
Image Source : X/@KANCHANGUPTA Former Bihar Chief Minister, Karpoori Thakur.

The Central Government on Tuesday announced Bharat Ratna for former Bihar Chief Minister Karpoori Thakur, just before his 100th birth anniversary. The decision comes after Janata Dal United (JDU) advocated for conferring Bharat Ratna on Karpoori Thakur; JDU expressed gratitude to the Modi government for the recognition.

Early life

Born in Pitaunjha village in 1924 in Samastipur district, Karpoori Thakur cleared the Matric exam in 1940. He actively participated in the freedom struggle, aligning himself with Acharya Narendra Dev. Karpoori Thakur's political journey was defined by an unwavering commitment to uplift the oppressed sections of society.

Chief ministerial tenure

Serving as the Chief Minister of Bihar, Thakur played a pivotal role in the fight against social discrimination and inequality. His policies focused on affirmative action, providing opportunities for the underprivileged.

 

Socialist ideals

Emerging as a face of the socialist movement after his release from jail in 1945, Thakur aimed at eradicating societal discrimination and achieving independence from British rule.

Political journey

Elected as a legislator for the first time in 1952 from the Tajpur constituency, he later became a prominent leader in the United Socialist Party, leading to the formation of Bihar's first non-Congress government in 1967.

Contribution as Deputy CM

When Mahamaya Prasad Sinha became the Chief Minister, Karpoori Thakur served as the Deputy CM and held the Education Ministry, abolishing student fees and ending the mandatory status of English.

Pioneering reforms

During his tenure as Chief Minister, he implemented significant reforms, including ending malguzari on certain lands, providing 27% reservation to backward classes before the Mandal Commission movement, and granting Urdu the status of the state's language. Thakur's visionary reforms in education, employment, and farmer welfare were groundbreaking, bringing tangible improvements to the lives of many. His emphasis on representation for the poor and deprived left an indelible mark.

 

Legacy

Karpoori Thakur's political influence grew, marking him as a prominent figure in Bihar politics. He remains remembered for his dedication to social justice and his role as a key socialist leader in the Mandal movement.

Symbol of democracy

The government's decision to honour Thakur reflects his symbolic stature as a champion of democracy and social justice. His impact as a motivational figure for marginalized communities is acknowledged and celebrated.

Alignment with constitutional values

Thakur's life and work align with the core principles of the Indian Constitution, emphasising equality, fraternity, and justice for all. The award recognises his role in embodying these constitutional values.

Inspiration for future generations

Beyond a retrospective acknowledgement, the award serves as an inspiration for future generations, highlighting Thakur's values of simplicity, inclusiveness, and an unwavering commitment to social justice.

Also read | Bihar: Nitish Kumar meets Governor, Cabinet minister Vijay Chaudhary also present

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