National Sports Day in India is commemorated on 29 August to celebrate Indian hockey legend, Major Dhyan Chand. Major Dhyan Chand was the Leader of the Gold medal-winning Indian hockey crew at the Berlin Olympics in 1936. The Captain was born on 29 August 1905 in the Prayagraj, formerly Allahabad.
Sports are acknowledged as essential for the physical and mental development of humans. The person who plays any sport always remains healthy. Many sporting legends have lived in India like; PT Usha, known as Udanpari, Sachin Tendulkar, known as Master Blaster. And Major Dhyan Chand is known as ‘Hockey Wizards.’
Let us learn more about National Sports Award, it’s past, importance, and about Major Dhyan Chand.
The most famous hockey player of India, ‘Major Dhyan Chand Singh,’ worldwide known as ‘Wizard of Hockey,’ was born on 29 August 1905 in Allahabad city. After getting a primary education, Dhyan Chand joined the Indian army as a soldier in 1922.
Major Dhyan Chand Singh’ was a real sportsperson; he was driven to play hockey by Subedar Major Tiwari, he was a sports enthusiast. Dhyan Chand started playing hockey under his guidance. Due to his exceptional performance in his game, Dhyan Chand was selected as ‘ Lance Naik’ in 1927, and in 1932 he was elevated to Nayak and Subedar in 1936 when he was Captain of the Indian hockey team. Later on, he progressed on to become Lieutenant; Captain and was eventually promoted to Major.
Major Dhyan Chand’s Performance
Major Dhyan Chand was such a great hockey player that if the ball once stuck in his stick, it used to remove only after scoring the goal. It was the reason that once his hockey stick was broken during a match to check whether the stick has any magnet or something else inside it or not.
Dhyan Chand was the Captain of the Indian Hockey team at the Berlin Olympic Games of 1936.
Major Dhyan Chand was a member of the three-time Olympic gold medalist Indian Hockey Team. Captain Dhyan Chand had scored more than 400 international goals from 1926 to 1948 while scoring nearly 1,000 goals in his entire career.
To give genuine tribute to such a fabulous player, the Government of India has determined to celebrate his birthday as the National Sports Day since 2012. Before this honor, he has been awarded the Padma Bhushan Award by the Government of India in 1956, the third-largest civilian award in our nation.
National Sports Day Carnival
National Sports Day is also observed widely at the national level. It is organized each year in the Rashtrapati Bhavan, and the President of the nation bestows National Sports Awards to the corresponding winners. They are glorified as they have heightened the value of the tricolor flag worldwide.
Following the National Sports Award, players and former players are acknowledged with various other awards like Arjuna Award, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award, and Dronacharya Award. Along with all these honors, the “Dhyan Chand Award” is also presented on this day.
After the passing of Major Dhyan Chand in 1979, the Indian Postal Department paid tribute to Major Dhyan Chand and published stamps in his honor. As recognition to him, the National Stadium of Delhi has also been renamed Major Dhyan Chand Stadium, Delhi. In 2020, the awardees received their awards from President Ram Nath Kovind on 20 August 2020 to commemorate National Sports Day, at a specially organized function from Rashtrapati Bhawan through virtual mode due to pandemic situation.