Prime Minister Narendra Modi Renames Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award as Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award

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The famous Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award will be renamed to Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, according to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The medal, which was previously known as the country’s greatest athletic honor, was renamed by the Indian prime minister to reflect the emotions of Indian residents. The reward money for this renowned award is Rs 25 lakh.

History of the Award

Mr. Rajiv Gandhi, India’s former Prime Minister, was honored with the prize, which was established in 1991. The award is given out once a year to motivate athletes to achieve even greater accomplishments. The winners in each discipline are determined by a twelve-member selection committee appointed by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. The award includes a medal, a certificate, and a monetary prize.


Chess Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand was the first recipient of the award, which he received for his achievements in 1991–92. Sport shooter Abhinav Bindra, just 18 years old, was the youngest recipient of the award in 2001.

In each discipline, only two sportspeople, one male and one female, are given the highest marks. The committee can only recommend the athlete who received the highest overall score in a particular sports discipline, not the athlete who received the highest overall score across all disciplines. The recommendations of the selection committee will be sent to the Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports for final approval.

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Changing the Name

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After receiving countless petitions from citizens across India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared that the Khel Ratna Award would be named after Major Dhyan Chand.

Major Dhyan Chand was one of India’s most illustrious athletes, bringing glory and pride to the country. He was recognized for his incredible goal-scoring prowess, as well as winning three Olympic gold medals in field hockey in 1928, 1932, and 1936, at an age when India dominated the sport. He is recognized as one of the greatest athletes of all time, and his birthday, August 29, is commemorated throughout India each year as National Sports Day.

The men’s and women’s hockey teams’ outstanding performances, according to the prime minister, have captured the attention of the entire country, and there is a new enthusiasm for the sport spreading across the country.

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Final Thoughts

While many in India’s athletic community and on social media praised the renaming of the Khel Ratna in memory of the hockey legend, others questioned why the world’s largest cricket stadium is named after Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Even if the Narendra Modi stadium was renamed after a sportsperson, the alteration would not be an issue. In the absence of that, the adjustment screams of the government’s political vindictiveness. All sports venues should be renamed after sportsperson.

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