The Bharat Ratna is India’s highest civilian award, established in 1954. It is bestowed upon individuals who have demonstrated exceptional public service and achieved the highest level of excellence in various fields such as literature, science, and art.
The Bharat Ratna is India’s highest civilian award, established on January 2, 1954. It is bestowed upon individuals for their exceptional and highest-level service to any field, and it is presented by the President of India. In a single year, a maximum of three awards can be given, without regard to race, occupation, position, or gender. The inaugural recipients of this honor in 1954 were politician C. Rajagopalachari, philosopher Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, and scientist CV Raman.
It’s worth noting that Bharat Ratna awardees receive certain privileges, including a diplomatic passport, access to a separate immigration counter, and VIP lounge access at airports. Below, we provide a comprehensive list of Bharat Ratna awardees since its inception in 1954.
Bharat Ratna Award Winners Name
The Bharat Ratna award is a prestigious honor, and only three individuals can receive it in a single year. As per the constitution, recipients are not allowed to use “Bharat Ratna” as a prefix or suffix to their name. The award includes a certificate signed by the President of India and a medal.
The medal is shaped like a peepal leaf, measuring 5.8 cm in length, 4.7 cm in width, and 3.1 mm in thickness. It is made of bronze and features an embossed image of the sun at its center, measuring 1.6 cm in diameter. On the reverse side of the medal, you’ll find the state emblem and the nation’s motto, both inscribed in Devnagri script.
Bharat Ratna Award Winners Name List
|Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan||India’s first Vice-President and second President|
|C. V. Raman||Physicists|
mathematicians, and scientists
|Bharat Ratna 1955||Bhagwan Das||Activist|
philosopher, and educationist
|M. Visvesvaraya||Civil engineer|
statesman, and Diwan of Mysore
|Jawaharlal Nehru||Activist and author served as the Prime Minister of India|
|Bharat Ratna 1957||Govind Ballabh Pant||Activist and first Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh|
|Bharat Ratna 1958||Dhondo Keshav Karve||Social reformer and educator|
|Bharat Ratna 1961||Bidhan Chandra Roy||Physician, political leader, philanthropist, educationist, and social worker|
|Purushottam Das Tandon||Activist and speaker of the United Provinces Legislative Assembly|
|Bharat Ratna 1962||Rajendra Prasad||Activist, lawyer, statesman, and scholar|
|Bharat Ratna 1963||Zakir Husain||Activist, economist, and education philosopher served as a Vice-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University and the Governor of Bihar|
|Pandurang Vaman Kane||Indologist and Sanskrit scholar, known for his five-volume literary work|
|Bharat Ratna 1966||Lal Bahadur Shastri||Activist and served as the second Prime Minister of India|
|Bharat Ratna 1971||Indira Gandhi||First women Prime Minister of India|
|Bharat Ratna 1975||V. V. Giri||Trade Unionist|
|Bharat Ratna 1976||K. Kamaraj||Independence activist and statesman, former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu|
|Bharat Ratna 1980||Mother Teresa||Catholic nun and the founder of the Missionaries of Charity.|
|1983||Vinoba Bhave||Activist, social reformer, and a close associate of Mahatma Gandhi|
|Bharat Ratna 1987||Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan||First noncitizen, independence activist|
|Bharat Ratna 1988||M. G. Ramachandran||Actor turned politician, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu|
|Bharat Ratna 1990||B.R. Ambedkar||Social reformer and leader of the Dalits|
|Nelson Mandela||Leader of the Anti-Apartheid Movement in South Africa, President of South Africa|
|Bharat Ratna 1991||Rajiv Gandhi||Gandhi was the ninth Prime Minister of India serving from 1984 to 1989.|
|Vallabhbhai Patel||Activist and first Deputy Prime Minister of India|
|Morarji Desai||Activist, and Prime Minister of India|
|Bharat Ratna 1992||Abul Kalam Azad||Activist and first Minister of education|
|J. R. D. Tata||Industrialist, philanthropist, and aviation pioneer|
|Satyajit Ray||Director, filmmaker, writer, novelist|
|Bharat Ratna 1997||Gulzarilal Nanda||Activist, and interim Prime Minister of India.|
|Aruna Asaf Ali||Activist|
|A.P.J Abdul Kalam||Aerospace and defense scientist|
|Bharat Ratna 1998||M. S. Subbulakshmi||Carnatic classical vocalist|
|Chidambaram Subramaniam||Activist and former Minister of Agriculture of India|
|Bharat Ratna 1999||Jayaprakash Narayan||Activist, and social reformer|
|Ravi Shankar||Musician, sitar player|
|Bharat Ratna 2001||Lata Mangeshkar||Singer|
|Bismillah Khan||Hindustani classical shehnai player|
|Bharat Ratna 2009||Bhimsen Joshi||Hindustani classical vocalist|
|Bharat Ratna 2014||C. N. R. Rao||Chemist and professor, author|
|Bharat Ratna 2015||Madan Mohan Malaviya||Scholar and educational reformer.|
|Atal Bihari Bajpayee||Elected nine times to the Lok Sabha, twice to the Rajya Sabha, and served as the Prime Minister of India for three terms.|
|Bharat Ratna 2019||Pranab Mukherjee||Indian politician|
and senior leader in the Indian National Congress.
|Nanaji Deshmukh||A social activist from India|
education, health, and rural self-reliance.
|Bhupen Hazarika|| Indian playback singer, lyricist, musician|
singer, poet, and filmmaker from Assam.
First Recipient of Bharat Ratna Awards
- C. Rajagopalachari: A distinguished politician, independence activist, and the last Governor-General of India. He played a pivotal role in the Indian freedom struggle.
- Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan: A renowned philosopher, teacher, and statesman who served as the first Vice President and second President of India. He made significant contributions to the fields of philosophy and education.
- C.V. Raman: A celebrated physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1930 for his groundbreaking work on the scattering of light. His research had a profound impact on the field of science.
In total, 48 individuals have been honored with the Bharat Ratna award, with 16 of them receiving it posthumously. This esteemed award recognizes their exceptional contributions to society in various domains. Below is a list of these distinguished individuals and their notable contributions.
- The recipients of the Bharat Ratna award for the year 2019 were social activist Nanaji Deshmukh, politician and former President of India Pranab Mukherjee, and Indian playback singer, lyricist, poet, filmmaker, and musician Bhupen Hazarika.
- In a year, a maximum of three Bharat Ratna awards can be given to individuals who have demonstrated exceptional public service in society.
- The first posthumous recipient of the Bharat Ratna award was former Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, who was also a noted social activist.
- The Bharat Ratna Award was introduced in the year 1954.
- The first-ever Bharat Ratna Award was received by C.V. Raman for his significant contributions to the field of science.
Youngest Recipient of Bharat Ratna Award
Sachin Tendulkar, one of the greatest Indian cricketers of all time, holds the distinction of being the youngest recipient of the Bharat Ratna award in India. He was honored with this prestigious award in the year 2014 when he was 40 years old. Sachin Tendulkar’s remarkable contributions to the world of cricket have solidified his status as a legendary figure in the history of the sport.
Oldest Recipient of Bharat Ratna Award
Dhondo Keshav Karve holds the distinction of being the oldest recipient of the Bharat Ratna Award. A renowned social reformer, he received this prestigious honor on his 100th birthday in 1958. His dedicated efforts in the field of social reform and education made him a deserving recipient of the Bharat Ratna.