Former Prime Minister of the country, Chaudhary Charan Singh, will be conferred the Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian honour, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced on Friday.

Taking to the social media platform, PM Modi said this honour is dedicated to the former Prime Minister’s incomparable contribution to the country.

Bharat Ratna for Charan Singh, Narasimha Rao, and M S Swaminathan

Bharat Ratna for Charan Singh, Narasimha Rao, and M S Swaminathan

“It is the good fortune of our government that former Prime Minister of the country Chaudhary Charan Singh is being honoured with Bharat Ratna. This honour is dedicated to his incomparable contribution to the country. He had dedicated his entire life to the rights and welfare of farmers. Be it the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh or the Home Minister of the country, even as an MLA, he always gave impetus to nation-building. He also stood firm against the Emergency. His dedication to our farmer brothers and sisters and his commitment to democracy during the Emergency are inspiring to the entire nation,” PM posted on X.

The Prime Minister further announced that agricultural scientist MS Swaminathan and former PM PV Narasimha Rao will also be conferred with Bharat Ratna.

This exemplifies the Modi government’s commitment to the agricultural sector, as reflected by the selection of two out of three awardees, Chaudhary Charan Singh and MS Swaminathan, who have significantly championed the cause of agriculture.

Two of the awardees, Narasimha Rao and Chaudhary Charan Singh, come from non-BJP backgrounds, indicating Prime Minister Modi’s belief in conferring national honours in a very party-agnostic manner.

Narasimha Rao and MS Swaminathan hail from South India, showing that the Prime Minister values the contributions and expertise from all corners of the country.

Charan Singh was born in 1902 at Noorpur in the Meerut district of Uttar Pradesh to a middle-class peasant family. He graduated in science in 1923 and did his post-graduation at Agra University in 1925. Also trained in law, he set up practice in Ghaziabad. He shifted to Meerut in 1929 and later joined the Congress.

He was first elected to the UP Legislative Assembly from Chhaprauli in 1937 and represented the constituency in 1946, 1952, 1962, and 1967. He became Parliamentary Secretary in Pandit Govind Ballabh Pant’s Government in 1946 and worked in various departments such as Revenue, Medical and Public Health, Justice, Information etc.

In June 1951, he was appointed Cabinet Minister in the State and given charge of the Departments of Justice and Information. Later, he became the Minister for Revenue and Agriculture in the Cabinet of Sampurnanand in 1952. When he resigned in April 1959, he held charge of the Department of Revenue and Transport.

In CB Gupta’s Ministry, he was Minister for Home and Agriculture (1960). Charan Singh served as Minister for Agriculture and Forests (1962-63) in Sucheta Kripalani’s Ministry. He gave up the Department of Agriculture in 1965 and assumed charge of the Local Self-government department in 1966.

After the Congress split, he became the Chief Minister of UP for the second time in February 1970 with the support of the Congress Party. However, the President’s Rule was imposed in the State on October 2, 1970.

Meanwhile, Chaudhry Charan Singh’s grandson and RLD chief Jayant Chaudhry welcomed the announcement with a brief post on X: “ You have won our hearts.”