Sports Ministry recommends Dhyan Chand for Bharat Ratna

Sports Ministry recommends Dhyan Chand for Bharat Ratna

Sports Ministry recommends Dhyan Chand for Bharat Ratna
Union Sports Minister Vijay Goel on Tuesday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to consider the name of Indian hockey legend Major Dhyan Chand for Bharat Ratna.

The demand to confer the highest civilian award on Dhyan Chand has been a long-standing one and even prompted former hockey players to gather at Jantar Mantar here last year to raise the issue. Many believe that the legend, who guided India to three Olympic gold medals in 1928, 1932 and 1936, should have been conferred the award before Sachin Tendulkar received it in 2013.

Goel reignited the issue with his letter, and said the award to Dhyan Chand would delight the entire country.

“We in sports ministry strongly believe he should be given the Bharat Ratna, and that is why we have written to the prime minister to consider him about the same. Because, Major Dhyan Chand was a magician in hockey. We all know the wizardry he had shown during the 1928, 1932, 1936, Olympics. In the final of Berlin Games, he had scored three goals during India's 8-1 victory over Germany. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan and we even have an award instituted in his name which is the lifetime sports achievement award, ” Goel told DH.

“Our prime minister is very keen to have a sports culture in our country, so if Major Dhyan Chand gets Bharat Ratna, not only the sports fraternity, but the entire country would be happy about it. It is now up to the government to deliberate on it."

Goel believed hockey would get a further boost if the award is conferred on Dhyan Chand. “Hockey has been gaining off late. We are doing several things to help the sports in the country and towards that we are bringing a lot of changes. I believe Major Dhyan Chand getting the award will boost hockey even more in the country."
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