Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said India’s highest civilian award Bharat Ratna should be given to all doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers. He said this would be the true tribute to those who lost their lives in the fight against COVID-19.

In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Kejriwal wrote, “The country wants this year’s Bharat Ratna to be conferred upon the ‘Indian doctors’. I don’t mean any particular person. Doctors, nurses and paramedics should receive the honour.”

In the letter, he wrote, “Many doctors and nurses lost their lives fighting Coronavirus. Conferring the Bharat Ratna will be a true tribute to them. Lakhs of doctors and nurses served selflessly, without worrying about their lives or their families. There won’t be any better way to honour and thank them.”

“If the rules do not allow Bharat Ratna to be conferred to any group, then I request you to change the rules. Today the whole country is grateful to its doctors. It would make every Indian happy if we confer them with Bharat Ratna,” he wrote.

According to Indian Medical Association, more than 1,400 doctors and healthcare workers have succumbed to coronavirus infection since the pandemic hit last year. In the first wave of the pandemic, as many as 736 doctors had lost their lives. Around 748 doctors have lost their lives in the second wave, according to IMA’s data published in mid-June.

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