Contents: Preface. Introduction. 1. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan. 2. Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari. 3. C.V. Raman. 4. Bhagwan Das. 5. Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvarayya. 6. Pandit Jawaharal Nehru. 7. Govind Ballabh. 8. Dhondo Keshav Karve. 9. Bidhan Chandra Roy. 10. Purushottam Das Tandon. 11. Dr. Rajendra Prasad. 12. Zakir Hussain. 13. Dr. Pandurang Vaman Kane. 14. Lal Bahadur Shastri. 15. Indira Priyadarshini Gandhi. 16. Varahagiri Venkata Giri. 17. K. Kamaraj. 18. Mother Teresa. 19. Vinoba Bhave. 20. Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan. 21. M.G. Ramachandran. 22. B.R. Ambedkar. 23. Nelson Mandela. 24. Rajiv Gandhi. 25. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. 26. Morarji Desai. 27. Abul Kalam Azad. 28. J.R.D. Tata. 29. Satyajit Ray. 30. Abdul Kalam. 31. Gulzarilal Nanda. 32. Aruna Asaf Ali. 33. M.S. Subbulakshmi. 34. Chidambaram Subramaniam. 35. Jayaprakash Narayan. 36. Ravi Shankar. 37. Amartya Sen. 38. Gopinath Bordoloi. 39. Lata mangeshkar. 40. Bismillah Khan.
"The award was established by the First President of India, Rajendra Prasad, on January 2, 1954. Along with other major national honours, such as the Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri, the awarding of the Bharat Ratna was suspended from July 13, 1977 to January 26, 1980. The honour has been awarded to forty persons, a list which includes two non-Indians and a naturized Indian citizen.
Originally, the specifications for the award called for a circular gold medal carrying the state emblem and motto, among other things. It is uncertain if a design in accordance with the original specifications was ever made. This book covers about 40 recipients of Bharat Ratna. A brief like sketch of all those Bharat Ratnas are provided in the book." (jacket)