Communist veteran Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee refuses Padma Bhushan
A senior home ministry official rejected Bhattacharjee's claim that he had not been informed about the award. He said a call was made to his residence earlier in the day, while adding there is no provision of taking consent for giving Padma awards.
Former West Bengal chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee on Tuesday refused to accept the Padma Bhushan that was conferred on him by the Narendra Modi-led BJP government at the Centre on the eve of Republic Day.
Bhattacharjee, a former member of the politburo of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), and chief minister of West Bengal from 2002 to 2011, said he was not informed about being given the award.
However, a senior home ministry official rejected the claim and said a call was made to his residence earlier in the day, while adding there is no provision of taking consent for giving Padma awards.
CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury, shared the ailing leader's statement on Twitter.
“Former Party PB member & WB CM Buddhadeb Bhattacharya had this to say on the Padma Bhushan award announcement I don't know anything about Padma Bhushan award, none has said anything about it. If I have been given Padma Bhushan I refuse to accept it,” Yechury wrote.
Later, the senior MHA ministry official said a call was made at Bhattacharjee's residence on Tuesday morning and it was received by his wife and she was informed about the Padma award being conferred on the Communist veteran.
There is no provision of taking consent for giving Padma awards to anyone, awardees are only informed after the decision has been made, the official added.
Among other notable political leaders from across the spectrum to receive the country’s third-highest civilian award of Padma Bhushan is Congress veteran Ghulam Nabi Azad.
The Union ministry of home affairs announced the Padma Awards hours ago and named 128 eminent personalities for country highest civilian awards.
(With inputs from bureau)