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Kovind presents National Sports and Adventure Awards

President Ram Nath Kovind presenting the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award, 2017 to former Indian hockey captain Sardar Singh in a ceremony, at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on August 29, 2017.
President Ram Nath Kovind presenting the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award, 2017 to former Indian hockey captain Sardar Singh in a ceremony, at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on August 29, 2017.
President Ram Nath Kovind presented the National Sports and Adventue Awards, including the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Awards, the country's highest sporting honour, to para athlete Devendra Jhajharia and former Indian hockey captain, at a ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan here today.
 
Jhajharia, 36, is a javelin thrower who had won gold medals at the 2004 Summer Paralympics in Athens and at the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro. 
 
Sardar Singh, 31, became the youngest player to lead the Indian hockey team in the 2008 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup tournament. He remained captain of the team till 2016. The Government had earlier honoured him with the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award, in 2015.
 
The Dronacharya Awards for coaches were given this year to late Dr. R. Gandhi (Athletics), Heera Nand Kataria (Kabaddi), G.S.S.V. Prasad (Badminton -- Lifetime), Brij Bhushan Mohanty (Boxing -- Lifetime), P.A. Raphael (Hockey -- Lifetime), Sanjoy Chakraverthy (Shooting -- Lifetime) and Roshan Lal (Wrestling -- Lifetime). The award for late Dr. Gandhi was received by Dr. Sailaxmi, his wife.
 
As many as 17 players have been chosen for the prestigious Arjuna Awards 2017, including cricketers Cheteshwar Pujara and Harmanpreet Kaur. Pujara, however, could not be present to receive the award today as he is abroad with the Indian team. He will receive the award later.
 
The other Arjuna Award winners are: V.J. Surekha (Archery); Khushbir Kaur, Arokia Rajiv (Athletics); Prasanthi Singh (Basketball); Laishram Debendro Singh (Boxing); Oinam Bembem Devi (Football); S.S.P. Chawrasia (Golf); S.V. Sunil (Hockey); Jasvir Singh (Kabaddi); P. N. Prakash (Shooting); A. Amalraj (Table Tennis); Saketh Myneni (Tennis); Satyawart Kadian (Wrestling); and Mariyappan and Varun Singh Bhati (Para-Athletes).
 
The Dhyan Chand Award for lifetime contribution to sports development webt this year to Bhupender Singh (Athletics); Syed Shahid Hakim (Football) and Sumarai Tete (Hockey).
 
President Ram Nath Kovind with the winners of the National Sports and Adventure Awards at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on August 29, 2017.
President Ram Nath Kovind with the winners of the National Sports and Adventure Awards at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on August 29, 2017.
Apart from a medal and a citation, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Awardees received a cash prize of Rs. 7.5 lakh each. Arjuna, Dronacharya and Dhyan Chand Awardees received statuettes, certificates and a cash prize of Rs. 5 lakh each.
 
The Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Awards 2017 were conferred on Premlata Agrawal (Land Adventure), Rohan Dattatrey More (Water Adventure) and Ashok Abbey and Ved Prakash Sharma (Lifetime Achievement).
 
The Maulana Abul Kalad Azad Troph 2016-17 was given to Punjabi University, Patiala.
 
The Rashtriya Khel Protsahana Puruskar 2017 was conferred on Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (Identification and Nurturing of Budding and Young Talent); Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (Encouragement to sports through corporate social responsibility) and the Golf Foundation and the Reliance Foundation (Sports for Development).
 
National Sports Awards are given every year to recognize and reward excellence in sports. Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award is given for spectacular and most outstanding performance in the field of sports by a sportsperson over a period of four year, Arjuna Award is given for consistently outstanding performance for four years, Dronacharya Award for coaches for producing medal winners at prestigious International sports events and Dhyan Chand Award for life time contribution to sports development.
 
The Selection Committee for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award and Arjuna Awards was headed by Justice C.K. Thakkar (former Judge Supreme Court of India and former Chief Justice of High Court of Himachal and Bombay). The Selection Committee for Dronacharya Awards and Dhyan Chand Awards was headed by well-known badminton coach Pullela Gopichand.'
 
As many as 14 young sports achievers also attended today's ceremony. Four of them are gold medalists from the Asian School Championships for Athletics 2015, one gold medalist from the Asian School Championship for Swimming 2016 and nine gold medalists from the Gymnasiade conducted by the International School Sport Federation in 2016.
 
NNN
 
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