New Delhi: The President has approved Sachin Tendulkar's name as a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha. Bollywood actor Rekha, and businesswoman Anu Aga are the two others whose names have been approved for a nominated seat in the Upper House of Parliament.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had written to the President with the government's recommendations.
Observers, however, point out that Sachin is actively involved in playing cricket and may be hard pressed for time. Last year, the master-blaster was playing cricket or touring with Team India for 235 days. He could have been on the road for 305 days, had he not dropped out of tour to West Indies or the one-day internationals in England.
BJP's Ravi Shankar Prasad said, "I don't know what they are trying to do. It must be in early stages. But if it is true, we expect him to attend. Parliament is serious business."
"It is good. Government should nominate people like Sachin Tendulkar and other eminent persons from different walks of life," CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat told reporters in Chennai on the sidelines of a party function.
"It'll be nice if he is in Parliament. He'll bat and we'll bowl googlies to him," said Congress' Renuka Choudhary.
"Sachin will do a great job if he becomes an MP in the Rajya Sabha. We need honest people like him," footballer Baichung Bhutia said.
Sachin Tendulkar meets Sonia Gandhi
Sachin, and his wife Anjali, today paid a courtesy visit to Congress President Sonia Gandhi at her 10 Janpath Residence in New Delhi. Mrs Gandhi wanted to meet the batting great and personally congratulate him on achieving the historic feat of scoring 100 international centuries recently.
According to sources, Tendulkar and his wife spent close to half an hour with Sonia.
The Congress President is learnt to have talked about cricket and wished the player luck for his future.
The master-blaster who turned 39 on Tuesday, is in Delhi to play an IPL match for the Mumbai Indians against the Delhi Daredevils tomorrow.
Process of nomination to Rajya Sabha
Under article 80 of the Constitution, the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) is composed of not more than 250 members, of whom 12 are nominated by the President of India from amongst persons who have special knowledge or practical experience in respect of such matters as literature, science, art and social service. (List of people nominated to the Rajya Sabha)
In practice, the Home Ministry finalises on the names and notifies the process. The Prime Minister then writes to the President with the government's recommendations through the Home Ministry.Usually, a consent is sought before a person's name is recommended for nomination to the Upper House.