The amendment of rules to make sports persons like Sachin Tendulkar eligible for Bharat Ratna was today welcomed by leaders cutting across party lines.
While Union Minister and BCCI official Rajiv Shukla termed it as a "good move" saying Tendulkar is the "fittest person" to be given Bharat Ratna, BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Prakash Javdekar said conferring of highest civilian order on the little master "will be a matter of pride for Bharat Ratna also".
Shukla said as a cricket administrator he had been demanding for almost two years that Bharat Ratna be conferred on Tendulkar.
"It is a good move by the Government. I appreciate and congratulate the Government. He is the most deserving person and this award is meant for those people who have made outstanding contribution internationally. Tendulkar is one person whose record can never be broken by any one as I assume," Shukla told reporters outside Parliament House.
"He is the fittest person to be given Bharat Ratna and I would humbly request the Prime Minister and the Government to consider bestowing Bharat Ratna on Tendulkar," he said.
Shukla also supported the suggestion that legendary hockey player Major Dhyan Chand should be given Bharat Ratna.
"Sachin should get Bharat Ratna. This will be a matter of pride for Bharat Ratna also," Javdekar said.
Union Minister and National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah also expressed hope that Tendulkar would be given Bharat Ratna.
Both Abdullah and Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi said Dhyan Chand should also be conferred the Bharat Ratna posthumously.
"Dhayan Chand excelled as a hockey player," Abdullah said.