On January 25, 2019, former President Pranab Mukherjee, social activist and RSS ideologue late Nanaji Deshmukh and late Assamese singer Dr Bhupen Hazarika were honoured with Bharat Ratna at Rashtrapati Bhawan. A debate over the names of the Bharat Ratna awardees ensued and joining that debate is none other than Baba Ramdev. The yoga guru seems quite upset about the fact that a sadhu hasn't been conferred with the award yet. In fact, he even went as far as to invoke Mother Teresa to back his case.
Baba Ramdev told ANI, “Is contribution of Maharishi Dayananda or Swami Vivekananda less than any politician or artist? Not a single hermit or saint has been awarded Bharat Ratna. Mother Teresa was given the award since she is Christian but not to Hindu saints. Is it a sin to be born a Hindu in this country?” He further added, “It's unfortunate that in last 70 years, not even one sanyasi has been awarded Bharat Ratna, be it Maharishi Dayananda Saraswati or Swami Vivekananda, Shivakumara Swami Ji. All these saints who have contributed so much must also be conferred with the Bharat Ratna.”
His comments regarding the Bharat Ratna did not go down well with netizens. Many seem to be pointing a finger at him stating that he's dropping hints about wanting to be honoured with the award himself and therefore making statements such as these.
Baba Ramdev seems angry with the government but it does not come as a surprise given that he's already made his political affiliations clear. While he was a BJP supporter for most of Narendra Modi's term, in September last year he made it clear that he won’t campaign for BJP in the coming Lok Sabha elections.