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Should Sachin Tendulkar confer Rajya sabha nomination or Bharat Ratna?
Short time back, it was a million dollar question that when will Sachin would be honored with the highest civilian award of the country as the adornment was obvious but the time of occurrence was vague, but now the deliberations are gaining tempo, this time in the Upper House of the Parliament, that should Sachin be welcomed to a place where actually he doesn't belong to? Obviously the bird's eye view will tell that politics is surely not the place for a sports' personality to be where concerns are placed more upon the economic and social issues rather than the decisions regarding run outs or LBWs. Now the question is - should the great batsman be awarded the Bharat Ratna or a parliamentarian seat in the country's political stadium?
Sachin Tendulkar, no doubt is an achiever of a rare kind, has consolidated more than 30,000 international runs in all forms of the game altogether, a century of centuries to his name – a feat which no other cricketer has managed to pull off, which will be cherished in the cricketing community for the eternity and a true sportsperson whose cricketing career, besides few controversies, is as immaculate as the country's national flag. These credentials are enough for him to bargain for the Bharat Ratna, but a seat in the parliament is still a blurred prospect. A parliament is a place where deliberations and debates regarding legislative bills and national policies are held for which one has to be well versed with the country's socio-economic aspects, the demographics and the prevailing political environment within the country and Tendulkar just doesn't fits into the picture. Sports ministry could be one department where the prospects are somewhat encouraging for the master but there too policy-making would be a lot more challenging task for him than facing Lee & McGrath at the Australian pitches.
If we take a closer look at the idea, then introducing sportsmen in policy making is not that bad, especially if they are to be taken for the welfare of sports community because as the persons from the same community and environment, they are more enlightened to take decisions rationally and constructively keeping in mind the vagaries and threats faced by the neglected lot of the sporting world and how to encourage youth to take sports as their career and make a buoyant atmosphere for the exploitation of the immense talent present within the nation's boundaries. Ministry of Youth & Sports Affairs so far has been miserably failed, on the one hand, to spur the growth of other sports like Football, Squash, Volleyball, for that matter, in the country and on the other, is not been able to arrest the leaching effect which the commercialization of cricket has had on our national sport Hockey so far. Sachin has been one of the greatest ambassadors, not just for the world cricket but for the entire sports fraternity worldwide and could might well prove to be a leader to reckon with.
Does he deserves the Bharat Ratna, yes, but does he deserves to be an MP, needs to be revisited further because MPs from sporting world and cinema have not contributed anything significant to the policy making and the betterment of our country so far. It might well be the move to politicize the great game of cricket further, already marred by the 'fixing' bug, by strengthening the corruption nexus thriving in the cricketing world. At the end, it is up to the great master who could choose to remain the mascot of the cricket and continue to inspire the young generations of the cricketers to come or start his second innings on the pitch where he would surely be dealing with lots of political bouncers and swingers and that too with a little skill.
- Himanshu Dhumash