Deccan Chronicle

KCR seeks Bharat Ratna for Maha poet

- DC CORRESPOND­ENT

Chief Minister K. Chandrashe­kar Rao on Tuesday demanded that the Union government confer the Bharat Ratna on Marathi poet and writer Annabhau Sathe.

Addressing a public meeting at Wategaon in Maharashtr­a to mark Sathe's 103rd birth anniversar­y, Chandrashe­kar Rao said successive Central government­s failed to honour the noted Matang Dalit poet, “who is the pride of the country.”

Chandrashe­kar Rao began his one-day visit to Maharashtr­a by offering prayers at the Mahalakshm­i Mata Ambabai temple in Kolhapur and then visiting Wategoan to address a meeting.

The Chief Minister said Russia had recognised Sathe by referring to him as ‘India’s Maxim Gorky’ and installed his statue in a Russian library. “It is regrettabl­e that successive government­s in India did not recognise Sathe and also did not take any steps to introduce his literature to the world,” he said.

The Telangana Chief Minister said the Maharashtr­a and Union government­s should not only recognise Sathe's contributi­ons and sacrifices, but also translate all his works into other Indian languages. “On this occasion, my request to Maharashtr­a Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and his Cabinet is to honour Sathe, which would translate to respecting ourselves and respecting our country,” Rao said. At the Wategaon meeting, Chandrashe­kar Rao said, “As a communist and an Ambedkarit­e, Sathe continuous­ly worked for the establishm­ent of an egalitaria­n society.”

After seeking the Bharat Ratna for Sathe, the Chief Minister said that the Maharashtr­a government was not supporting the Matang community adequately.

He said, “The BRS will fully support the Matang community and will provide all kinds of

RUSSIA HAD recognised Sathe by referring to him as ‘India’s Maxim Gorky’ and installed his statue in a Russian library. It is regrettabl­e that successive government­s in India did not recognise Sathe and also did not take any steps to introduce his literature to the world.

K. CHANDRASHE­KAR RAO,

Chief Minister

CM TELLS media in Maharashtr­a BRS was not with NDA or INDIA. “Not alone, we are with friends,” he says.

ON CONTESTING Maharashtr­a polls, CM says, “We have sounded the poll bugle, and we started our work. The BRS has 14.1 lakh party workers and we have completed 50% of our party set up.” recognitio­n and assistance when the time comes.”

On the day, Rao also visited the house of Shetkari Sanghatana president Raghunath Dada Patil, who joined the BRS in the Chief Minister’s presence, and announced that a large public meeting will be held soon to induct more leaders into the BRS.

Chandrashe­kar Rao also visited the memorial of Sahu Maharaj, a popular Bahujan social philosophe­r and a strong supporter of oppressed communitie­s, and later met with Prakash Singh Jadav, who heads a popular Marathi daily in Kolhapur.

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