Every Hockey fan was happy on the day India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi decided to rename the “Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award” to “Major Dhyan Chand Award” who was also known as the magician of Hockey but very few people will be aware of his connection with Allahabad which is a city located in Eastern Uttar Pradesh.
I have been getting many requests from citizens across India to name the Khel Ratna Award after Major Dhyan Chand. I thank them for their views.
Respecting their sentiment, the Khel Ratna Award will hereby be called the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award!
Jai Hind! pic.twitter.com/zbStlMNHdq
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 6, 2021
Dhyan Chand played his hockey mostly in a pre-independence era known as “British India” back then and his father who served in the army like him was a Hockey player too. He was born in Allahabad and spent some part of his childhood in the city before moving to other places which were supposed to be Army Postings given to his father.
It might feel shocking to you that Allahabad doesn’t have any form of recognition for possibly one of the greatest Hockey players of all time as no streets, stadiums, buildings, and statues, etc have been named after him in the city.
All this seems pointless as the city where he was born has ignored his contribution towards our national sport but that is not surprising at all to the masses who have ignored Sporting stalwarts of the past for several decades. Another Interesting fact, his younger brother Roop Singh has a street named after him in Germany.
The recognition of these two men in foreign countries speaks a volume about their contribution towards this great game of hockey but it holds no relevance to the place where they are born. We can hope as Hockey fans that administrative changes will be taking place in the future by UP government who will give due credit to Dhyan Chand.
Naming a street or building a statue is the least you can expect from the administration to pay their tributes to Hockey Wizard Dhyan Chand. National Sports Day is celebrated on his birthday where prestigious Sports Honour awards are given to athletes who are uplifting the status of Indian sports on a consistent basis.