New Delhi [India], Aug 18 (ANI): Indian pacer Ishant Sharma is among the 29 athletes who have been recommended for the Arjuna Award so far.
Apart from Sharma, Atanu Das, Deepika Thakur, Deepak Hooda, Divij Sharan, Mirabai Chanu, Sakshi Malik, and three Paralympians have been recommended for the Arjuna Award. Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy have been recommended as a pair for the prestigious award, a source within the Sports Ministry told ANI.
Now, Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, Kiren Rijiju, will have a final decision on the Selection Committee's recommendations.
Earlier, Indian cricketer Rohit Sharma and hockey player Rani Rampal were recommended for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award. Wrestler Vinesh Phogat, table tennis player Manika Batra and 2016 Paralympic gold medallist Mariyappan Thangavelu were also recommended for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award on Tuesday.
For Dronacharya Lifetime award, eight names have been recommended and they are as follows -- Dharmendra Tiwary (archery), Pursohattam Rai (athletics), Shiv Singh (women's boxing), Romesh Pathania (men's hockey), KK Hooda (kabaddi), Vijay Munishwar (para powerlifting), Naresh Kumar (tennis), and O P Dahiya (wrestling).
With regards to the regular Dronacharya award, five names have been put forward -- Yogesh Malviya (Mallakhamb), Gaurav Khanna (para-badminton), Jaspal Rana (shooting), Kuldeep Handoo (wushu) and Jude Felix (hockey).
There are fifteen names which have been recommended for Dhyan Chand award -- Jincy Philips (athletics), Kuldeep Singh Bhullar (athletics), Trupti Murgunde (badminton), Pradeep Gandhe (badminton), N Usha (boxing), Lakha Singh (boxing), Sukhwinder Singh Sandhu (football), Ajeet Singh (hockey), Manpreet Singh (kabaddi), Manjeet Singh (rowing), Late Sachin Nag (swimming), Nandan Bal (tennis), Netar Pal Hooda (wrestling) and J Ranjit Kumar (para-athletics)
The National Sports Awards ceremony will take place virtually on August 29 due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
National Sports Awards which include the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award, the Arjuna award, the Dronacharya award, and the Dhyan Chand award, are conferred on athletes every year by the President of India at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on August 29, the National Sports Day.
However, this year, the names would be announced by President Ram Nath Kovind virtually.
"The ceremony will take place virtually but what we will have to see how the exact process would pan out," a source within the Sports Ministry told ANI on Monday.
When asked further about the details, the source said, "We will see that only names will be announced or players will appear on virtual screen. That is yet to be decided. Hopefully, everything will be decided in a couple of days."
Last month, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports had constituted a Selection Committee for selecting awardees for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Dronacharya Awards, Arjuna Awards, Dhyan Chand Awards, Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar Award and Maulana Abul Kalam Azad (MAKA) Trophy for the year 2020.
Retired Justice of Supreme Court Justice Mukundakam Sharma was selected as the Chairperson of the Committee."The Members include eminent names from the field of Indian Sports including Virender Sehwag (Cricket), Sardar Singh (Hockey), Monalisa Baruah Mehta (Table Tennis), Deepa Malik (Para-athletics), Venkatesan Devarajan (Boxing) as well as well-known media persons including Sports Commentator Manish Batavia and Sports Journalists Alok Sinha and Neeru Bhatia," the Sports Ministry's release had read.
Officials from the Sports Ministry in the committee included Director General, SAI, Sandip Pradhan, LS Singh, Joint Secretary (Sports Development), and Commander Rajesh Rajagopalan, CEO Target Olympic Podium Scheme. (ANI)