Maharaja Hari Singh decorated Mahabharat Ratna on his 121st Birth Anniversary

Rashtra Chetna Abhiyan with National Panthers Party paid richest tributes to Maharaja Hari Singh of J&K (1925-1952) who was the first Maharaja (King) among the Indian States who declared in the Round Table Conference in London that, “I am an Indian first and then a Maharaja.” This declaration Maharaja Hari Singh made a reply to the British Crown presided over the Round Table Conference that he shall support the liberation movement of India no matter whether he remains a King or not. 
Maharaja Hari Singh signed Instrument of Accession on 26th October, 1947 after driving his car from Srinagar to Jammu to sign the Instrument of Accession before Shri Krishna Menon, the Home Secretary of India who dared not land in Srinagar because of the Pakistani aggression against J&K. 
It was the prerogative of the king of J&K to decide on the issue of Accession being the Monarch. This was the enactment of the British Parliament. 12 Battalions of the Maharaja’s army, mostly the Dogras sacrificed their lives to defend the borders of J&K. 
The Panthers Party activists held a massive meeting at the Camp office of the Panthers Party, Jantar Mantar this afternoon where several activists from different political disciplines and volunteers of Rashtra Chetna Abhiyan. Prof. Bhim Singh in his address to the volunteers of Rashtra Chetna Abhiyan and activists of National Panthers Party described Maharaja Hari Singh as one of the greatest sons of India who has made unparalleled contribution to strengthen national integration and secularism ethos of India by signing the Instrument of Accession voluntarily. NPP Founder also appreciated the tallest Kashmiri Muslim leader that time, Sheikh Mohd. Abdullah for expressing total solidarity with the Union of India and supporting the Instrument of Accession. 
Prof.Bhim Singh in his tributes to the Maharaja said that Maharaja died suddenly at the age of 66 in his exile in Bombay in 1961. He accused the Congress and all other political parties that time who failed to pay real tributes to the greatest son of India and for his contributions in this regard. 
Prof.Bhim Singh said that the political parties including Congress, BJP and others deliberately ignored the contribution of the Maharaja only because he was a great democrat, secular to core and signed Instrument of Accession with secular-democratic India. He said that he was exiled by the Congress government in Delhi to please Sheikh Abdullah in 1949. His Monarchy, Prof.Bhim Singh revealed, was abolished on 20th August, 1952 by the so-called Constituent Assembly headed by Sheikh Mohd. Abdullah.
It was Maharaja Hari Singh who introduced revolutionary legislation by introducing State Subject giving permanent right of residents to the citizens in J&K, opening places of worship for all castes and communities, banning smoking among the minors and putting an end to exploitation of women. He founded the hospitals and colleges in the state, built modern infrastructure for the international tourism in Pahalgam, Gulmarg and other places. It is on his contributions to strengthen national integration, secularism and democratic institutions during his time that he has been declared as Mahabharat Ratna
English: Titles of Maharaja Hari Singh and Yuv...

English: Titles of Maharaja Hari Singh and Yuvraj(Crown Prince) as printed on the list of civil officers of Maharaja Hari Singh(Civil List)of 1945 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Prominent among those who participated included M/s. Rajiv Jolly Khosla, Romesh Khajuria, Surjit Singh Guleria, Kuldip Singh Gochhwal (President, Jaat Mahasabha), Bhawani Maharaj, Bharat Goswami (Chhatisgarh), C.P. Singh, Kapil Ahmed Ansar, Harish Adhikari, Ajit Singh, Ms. Sudesh Dogra, Om Kishan, Sushil Khanna, Kuldip Singh, Balwinder Kumar, Kali Ram Tomar, Dildar Hussain Beig, Mehfooz Khan and others.