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Arjuna Awardees

Arjuna Awardees

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Item Code: NAU785
Author: K. R. Wadhwaney
Publisher: Publications Division, Government of India
Language: English
Edition: 2002
ISBN: 8123002860
Pages: 472
Other Details: 9.50 X 6.00 inch
Weight 860 gm

The Arjuna Award, instituted in 1961 as the highest national recognition of distinguished sportspersons, is given for outstanding performance by sportspersons. The scope of the award has been enlarged to include such sportspersons also as have made a life-time contribution in their discipline. The awardee is presently given a bronze statuette of Arjuna, a scroll of honour and a cash prize of Rs. 1,50,000/-.

They are given in the month of August, at New Delhi by the President of India.

It is a fact that sportspersons were uncared for in the 1950s and 1960s. The change has come about during the last decade. Many of them have indeed carved a niche for themselves in the world of sports. But bulk among them have regretfully been forgotten. This, I feel, is sad.

This gallery of sportspersons is occupied with glorious personalities; men and women of concept, character and ambition and also of will-power and tenacity. The canvas is vast. It unfolds a span of 40 years since the awards were instituted in 1961.

The deeds of women have been no inferior to achievements of men although, for many years, women were virtually kept in purdah. Barring a few dynamic personalities, who are willing to defy, they are still pushed into background as the country is still governed by its own peculiar and orthodox systems. But women and also men have achieved incredible results despite sub-standard facilities. Some of them like P.T. Usha, Shiny Abraham (Wilson), Karnam Malleswari, Kunja Rani Devi, Gurbachan Singh, Shriram Singh, Prakash Padukone, Milkha Singh and host of others have done India proud in their own sphere and discipline.

Sports cannot be all success. There have to be victors and vanquished. After winning gold medal for eight times in Olympic hockey, Indian team has been languishing. It is not because of lack of talent and skill but because of total lack of system. European and some Asian nations have stolen a decisive march over India, which reigned supreme for decades.

Of about 600 awardees, I have had the privilege of meeting many of them. Those, whom I have not known well enough, I have watched them from close quarters time and again. There may however, be some from certain obscure disciplines, | have not had the opportunity to meet or watch them perform. To them, I owe an apology, if I have failed to do justice to them in this book.

The importance of a nation, to my way of thinking, revolves around health of citizens. Sportspersons portray nation’s worth. The more medals India wins, the more importance country will gain in the sphere of international relationship. Sport is now heart and lungs of the nation.

To collect material on one discipline, just as in the case of aquatics, was difficult. But to collect data on 36 disciplines (about 600 sportspersons), some obscure, like archery, ball badminton, and kho-kho and the like, was all the more problematic.

There are bound to be some lapses, errors and commissions, I therefore, welcome suggestions so that revised editions can be suitably improved upon.

The book, discipline-wise, has been presented in an alphabetical order for easy and quick reference. Awardees of the year 2000 have been placed at the end of this book.

I hope this book will enthral youngsters: as it highlights achievements of sportspersons from archery to athletics to football to hockey to badminton to wrestling to tennis and other disciplines.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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