By Reuters/ The Guardian –
Tendulkar’s nomination was confirmed in April, and he was sworn in by Hamid Ansari, who is chairman of the upper house and vice-president of India.
The upper house, or Rajya Sabha, has 250 members with six-year tenures, most of whom are elected. Tendulkar, 39, is among 12 nominated members chosen for their expertise in specific fields.
Notable personalities from literature, art and social services have been nominated before, but Tendulkar is the first sportsman to enter the upper house via a nominated seat.
“I believe cricket has given me many things in life,” Tendulkar told reporters after being sworn in. “I always had a dream of giving something back to cricket in the latter half. Today, as a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha, I am in a position to help not only cricket but other sports in the country.”
Tendulkar said as a member of parliament he would have a chance to create a legacy for all sports in India.
“I believe there will be obstacles, challenges along the way. I will need help from fellow parliamentarians, media and countrymen,” he said. “I hope to be remembered as having helped all sports persons and not just for my cricket statistics.”
Tendulkar, who holds several major cricket records including most runs and most centuries in both tests and one-day internationals, could not take his oath earlier because he was busy playing for the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League.
He became the first cricketer to post 100 international centuries earlier this year against Bangladesh during the Asia Cup tournament in Dhaka.
Tendulkar dismissed speculation he will retire from any format of cricket now he is a parliamentarian.
“Cricket comes first for me,” he said when asked about his priorities in the coming years.
Tendulkar joins the former India cricketers Mohammad Azharuddin, Navjot Sidhu and Kirti Azad in parliament.