New Delhi: Sachin Tendulkar will be conferred with Bharat Ratna. The official announcement was made by a release from the Prime Minister's Office on Saturday.
The legendary cricketer, who played his final innings in cricket today, at Wankhede, will be the first sportsperson to be honoured with the award. "I dedicate this to my mother," he reportedly said. Tendulkar is the seventh Maharashtrian to win Bharat Ratna after Dhondo Karve, Pandurang Kane, Vinoba Bhave, BR Ambedkar, Lata Mangeshkar and Bhimsen Joshi.
The decision to honour Tendulkar comes after several noted personalities had voiced their support. Lata was the latest to say that Tendulkar deserved Bharat Ratna. "Whatever he (Sachin) has done for the country, very few people can. He deserves the honour. He has made all of us proud," Lata had told television channels on Friday. She herself had received the honour in 2001.
Namaskar. Mujhe abhi pata chala hai ki Sachin Tendulkar ko Bharat ka sarvocch nagri samman BHARAT RATNA (cont) http://t.co/Vh4bB2T7D3— latamangeshkar (@mangeshkarlata) November 16, 2013
Tendulkar bowed out of cricket today out as the most successful batsman in international cricket with 15,921 runs in 200 Tests. In his ODI career, which he needed last year, Tendulkar amassed 18,426 runs in 463 matches.
Bharat Ratna gets Sachin Tendulkar. Jai Ho.:)— Anupam Kher (@AnupamPkher) November 16, 2013
Bharat Ratna is India's highest civilian award, conferred for performance of highest order in any field of human endeavour. The honour has been conferred on 41 people till date. The living recipients include former president APJ Abdul Kalam (1997) and economist Amartya Sen (1999). The only foreign recipient of the award was Nelson Mandela (1990).