National Sports Day: PM Narendra Modi pays tribute to Major Dhyan Chand on birth anniversary

Dhyan Chand is one of the greatest field hockey players of all time around the world. Every year on this day, Arjuna, Khel Ratna awards are conferred by the President of India to celebrate the achievements of exceptional athletes in the country.

By: Express Web Desk | Published: August 29, 2017 10:47 am
Major Dhyan Chand, A K Bansal, Bharat Ratna, sports news, hockey, Indian Express Major Dhyan Chand’s birth anniversary is celebrated as National Sports Day every year on August 29. (Source: Express Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday congratulated sports achievers for their passion and paid tribute to Major Dhyan Chand, whose birth anniversary is celebrated as National Sports Day in the country.

Dhyan Chand, who was conferred with the Padma Bhushan award, is one of the greatest field hockey players of all time. Every year on this day, Arjuna and Khel Ratna awards are conferred by the President of India to celebrate the achievements of exceptional athletes in the country.

Modi tweeted, “On #NationalSportsDay, I congratulate all sportspersons and sports enthusiasts who pursue sports with great vigour and passion. I pay tributes to the exemplary Major Dhyan Chand, whose legendary sporting skills did wonders for Indian hockey.”

Cricketer Virender Sehwag also paid respect to the hockey legend in a series of tweets that talked about the achievements of the ‘India’s greatest sportsmen’.

Sehwag narrated Dhyan Chand’s story and wrote, “Tributes to the greatest hockey player of all times and India’s greatest sportsman, Major Dhyanchand on #NationalSportsDay. Every child in the country must know about the legend Major Dhyanchand was. He joined the Indian army at the age of 16 and retired in 1956. He was called Chand by his team-mates because he used to wait for the moon to come out for practice. He was also called as “The Wizard”.

“During the 1936 Olympic final against Germany, it’s said that Dhyan Chand removed his spiked shoes & stockings in 2nd half & played barefoot. Barefoot, he scored 3 goals.What a legend !In Netherlands,once the authorities broke his hockey stick to check if there was a magnet inside. There is a sports club in Vienna having a statue of Dhyanchand bearing 4arms & 4hockey sticks to illustrate just how magical his skills were.”

“It is said that in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, Dhyan Chand who was the flag-bearer, refused to salute Adolf Hitler. What a man! During 1936 Olympics, the whole city of Berlin had posters: “Visit the hockey stadium to watch the Indian magician Dhyan Chand in action. Sir Don Bradman on seeing Dhyan Chand said, “You score goals like runs”.
Such a legend needs to be known and celebrated so much more,” added Sehwag.

 

Hockey player Sardar Singh and Paralympian javelin thrower Devendra Jhajharia will be receiving the Khel Ratna award on Tuesday while 17 others have been recommended for Arjuna Awards.

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