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Nitish Kumar hails Bharat Ratna to ex-Bihar CM Karpoori Thakur, RJD leader terms it 'BJP's poll gimmick'

Karpoori Thakur was chosen for the country's highest civilian award a day ahead of his 100th birth anniversary. The announcement to confer the country's highest civilian award to Thakur, popularly known as 'Jan Nayak', was made by the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Anurag Roushan Edited By: Anurag Roushan @Candid_Tilaiyan Patna Updated on: January 24, 2024 7:19 IST
Karpoori Thakur, Karpoori Thakur Bharat Ratna, Nitiskh Kumar, RJD, Bihar politics
Image Source : SOCIAL MEDIA Karpoori Thakur was a leader whose political journey was marked by his unwavering commitment to the marginalised sections of society.

Nitish Kumar has welcomed the Union Government's decision to posthumously confer the Bharat Ratna on former Bihar Chief Minister Karpoori Thakur. However, JD(U)'s ally RJD has termed BJP's move a "political gimmick." Following the announcement, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar expressed his appreciation for conferring the highest civilian honour on Karpoori Thakur's 100th birth anniversary, anticipating a positive impact on the Dalits and marginalised communities.

The JD(U) chief, a long-time advocate for honouring Thakur with the prestigious award, conveyed his delight at the government's decision, stating that it would generate positive sentiments among the sections of society that have historically faced neglect and deprivation. 

Nitish Kumar hails govt's decision

"It is a matter of great pleasure to give the country's highest honour 'Bharat Ratna' to former Chief Minister and great socialist leader Late Karpoori Thakur ji. This is a good decision by the Central Government. This highest honour given to the Late Karpoori Thakur Ji on his 100th birth anniversary will create positive sentiments among all sections. We have always been demanding to give 'Bharat Ratna' to the Late Karpoori Thakur ji. The years-old demand has been fulfilled today," Kumar wrote in a post on X on Tuesday night. He also expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his government's decision. 

RJD calls it a move to get votes

While CM Kumar praised the Centre, his alliance partner in the state RJD said it was done to get votes. RJD's Mrityunjay Tiwari said the BJP was verbally abusing Karpoori Thakur when he was alive and did not remember him for nine years. "Our party and leader Lalu Yadav were demanding Bharat Ratna for him continuously. Now that elections are near, they are remembering Karpoori Thakur and awarded him the Bharat Ratna. These were the people who insulted Karpoori Thakur when he was alive, now they are remembering him for votes," he added. 

PM Modi praises Karpoori Thakur's contibution

Hailing Thakur for his contribution to society, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said this prestigious recognition is a testament to the socialist leader's enduring efforts as a champion for the marginalised and a stalwart of equality.

In a post on X, Modi said he is delighted that the government has decided to confer the Bharat Ratna on "the beacon of social justice, the great Jan Nayak Karpoori Thakur" and that too at a time when his birth centenary is being marked. "His unwavering commitment to uplift the downtrodden and his visionary leadership have left an indelible mark on India's socio-political fabric. This award not only honours his remarkable contributions but also inspires us to continue his mission of creating a more just and equitable society," the Prime Minister said.

Who was Karpoori Thakur? 

Born in 1924 into the Nai Samaj, Karpoori Thakur emerged as a remarkable leader with an unwavering commitment to the marginalised sections of the society. His political journey, marked by a profound dedication to social justice, saw him rise to the position of Chief Minister of Bihar.

Thakur's tenure was not merely a political role but it was also a transformative period in the fight against social discrimination and inequality. A staunch advocate for affirmative action, he championed the cause of representation and opportunities for the poor, oppressed, exploited, and deprived sections of the country.

Commencing his political career with the Praja Socialist Party, Thakur later aligned himself with the Janata Party during his initial stint as Bihar's Chief Minister from 1977 to 1979. Over a period of time, he transitioned his political allegiance to the Janata Dal, underscoring a significant shift in his political journey.

Karpoori Thakur's legacy endures as an embodiment of resilience, compassion, and a relentless pursuit of a more equitable society. His contributions to empowering the underprivileged continue to inspire generations, leaving an indelible mark on the annals of Indian political history. He had passed away on February 17, 1988, at the age of 64.

ALSO READ: Former Bihar CM Karpoori Thakur to be awarded Bharat Ratna posthumously

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