L K Advani: A Stalwart of Indian Politics Honored with the Bharat Ratna

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L K Advani Bharat Ratna

Lal Krishna Advani, a towering figure in Indian politics, was awarded the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, in 2024. This honor marks a significant milestone in the illustrious career of a man who has been instrumental in shaping the country’s political landscape for over seven decades.

Early Life and Political Journey

Born on November 8, 1927, in Karachi, now in Pakistan, L K Advani moved to India during the Partition in 1947. He began his political journey with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), a Hindu nationalist organization, which laid the foundation for his ideological beliefs. Advani’s formal political career took off when he joined the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, the predecessor of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), in the 1950s.

Rise in Indian Politics

Advani played a pivotal role in the formation of the BJP in 1980, along with Atal Bihari Vajpayee. As the party’s president, he was the architect of its rise from a marginal entity to one of the major political forces in India. His leadership during the Ram Janmabhoomi movement in the late 1980s and early 1990s galvanized Hindu nationalist sentiments and significantly boosted the BJP’s popularity, culminating in its victory in the 1996 general elections.

Major Contributions and Achievements

Ayodhya Movement: Advani’s rath yatra in 1990 from Somnath to Ayodhya was a turning point in Indian politics. It mobilized mass support for the construction of a Ram temple at the disputed site in Ayodhya, catapulting the BJP to the national stage.

Formation of NDA: Advani was instrumental in forming the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), a coalition of like-minded parties that governed India from 1998 to 2004 under Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. This coalition politics marked a new era in Indian governance.

Home Minister and Deputy Prime Minister: As Home Minister (1998-2004) and later Deputy Prime Minister (2002-2004), Advani implemented key policies on national security, including the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA), which aimed to curb terrorism but also attracted significant controversy.


Advani’s political career was not without controversies. The most notable was the Babri Masjid demolition in 1992, which led to widespread communal riots. His association with the event and subsequent legal battles greatly shadowed his career. Additionally, his remarks during a visit to Pakistan in 2005, where he praised Muhammad Ali Jinnah, created a stir within his party and among his supporters.

Also Read: Ayodhya Verdict – Supreme Court Gives Judgement for Lord Ram

Legacy and Impact

L K Advani’s influence on Indian politics is profound. He transformed the BJP into a formidable political entity and laid the groundwork for its future leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi. His strategies and policies have had a lasting impact on the political discourse in India, particularly concerning Hindutva and nationalism.

Bharat Ratna: Recognition of a Lifetime

Receiving the Bharat Ratna in 2024 is a testament to Advani’s enduring legacy and his contributions to Indian politics. This award honors his achievements and acknowledges his role in shaping the nation’s political narrative.


L K Advani’s journey from a young RSS pracharak to a recipient of the Bharat Ratna encapsulates the evolution of Indian politics over the past seven decades. His contributions, despite being marred by controversies, have left an indelible mark on the country’s political landscape. As India progresses, Advani’s legacy will continue to influence and inspire future generations of political leaders.

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Shalini Roy