Indian men’s hockey team captain Manpreet Singh on Tuesday supported the decision to rename the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award to Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award. He also said that it felt great to win a medal after so many years.
It feels great to win a medal after so many years. The last medal we won was before my birth… The govt has taken right decision by renaming the 'Khel Ratna' award after Major Dhyan Chand: Indian Men's Hockey Captain Manpreet Singh on winning bronze at #Tokyo2020 Olympics pic.twitter.com/4O5zdftRcx— ANI (@ANI) August 10, 2021
His support for the renaming of the Khel Ratna Award irked quite a few on social media, including the National Spokesperson of the Congress party. Dr. Shama Mohammed said on Twitter, “Is our Men’s hockey Captain ignorant of the fact that it was Rajiv Gandhi khel Ratna Award & not just “Khel Ratna” Award !”
Congress sympathiser Sumanth Raman, too, appeared miffed with Manpreet Singh for his support towards the decision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to change the name of the award to Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced on the 6th of August that henceforth, the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award shall be known as the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award. The Prime Minister said that he had received request from people across the country to name the award after the Indian Hockey legend. Therefore, respecting their wishes, the name has been altered accordingly.
The Khel Ratna Award is the highest sporting honour in India. Until now, it has been named after Rajiv Gandhi, former Prime Minister of the country and the son of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. There have been calls by citizens for a significant period of time to name the award after a sporting legend instead of a politician.