Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated that the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award will be renamed as Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award to “respect the emotions of residents across the country.” The Khel Ratna award is the nation’s highest athletic honour.
“I’ve received several requests from individuals throughout India to name the Khel Ratna Award after Major Dhyan Chand. I appreciate their input. The Khel Ratna Award has been renamed the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award in recognition of their sentiment! Jai Hind! ” Prime Minister Modi posted a tweet.
The Khel Ratna award was first presented in 1991-1992 to chess master Viswanathan Anand. Leander Paes, Sachin Tendulkar, Dhanraj Pillay, Pullela Gopichand, Abhinav Bindra, Anju Bobby George, Mary Kom, and Rani Rampal were among the opposite winners.
The award, currently known as the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna, carries a monetary reward of Rs 25 lakh.
Soon after the announcement, netizens welcomed the decision and a few were critical also.