Prime Minister Narendra Modi today announced that the highest award is given to any sportsperson in the country, Khel Ratna Award will now be known as Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award after the legendary hockey player.
PM Modi took to Twitter to make the announcement. He tweeted,”I have been getting many requests from citizens across India to name the Khel Ratna Award after Major Dhyan Chand. I thank them for their views. Respecting their sentiment, the Khel Ratna Award will hereby be called the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award! Jai Hind!”
“Major Dhyan Chand was among India’s foremost sportspersons who brought honour and pride for India. It is fitting that our nation’s highest sporting honour will be named after him,” PM Modi said.
The exceptional performance of the men’s and women’s Hockey Team has captured the imagination of our entire nation, the prime minister said, adding that there is a renewed interest towards the sport that is emerging across the length and breadth of India.
Dhyan Chand was honoured with the Padma Bhushan in 1956. His birthday on 29 August is celebrated as National Sports Day in India every year. The prestigious award carries prize money of ₹25 lakh.