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12 athletes including Neeraj receive Khel Ratna, 35 others get Arjuna Award

The President also presented Dronacharya Award to outstanding coaches in Sports and Games, Dhyan Chand Award for Lifetime Achievement in Sports & Games, and Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar.

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New Delhi: President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday conferred Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award to 12 players including Tokyo Olympics Gold medallist javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra at the Rashtrapati Bhawan here on Saturday.

Along with Chopra, Ravi Kumar (Wrestling), Lovlina Borgohain (Boxing), Sreejesh PR and Manpreet Singh(Hockey) , Avani Lekhara (Para-shooting) , Sumit Antil (Para-athletics), Pramod Bhagat and Krishna Nagar (Para Badminton), Manish Narwal (Para Shooting) , Mithali Raj (Cricket) and Sunil Chhetri (Football) also received the prestigious award.

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35 Indian sportspersons received Arjuna award for their outstanding contribution in the field of sport.

Avani Lekhra, the para-shooter who became the first Indian to clinch two medals (Gold and Bronze) in a single paralympic/olympic games, was honoured with Arjuna Award along with three other Para- athletes.

Indian para-athletes showcased a historic performance at the Tokyo Paralympics and won 19 medals, the most in Indian paralympic history.

Indian men’s hockey team, who won historic bronze medal in the Tokyo Olympics, was awarded prestigious Arjun Award (with the exceptions of PR Sreejesh and Manpreet Singh).

The prestigious Khel Ratna award carries a cash prize of Rs 25 lakh, a medal and a scroll of honour, and the Arjuna award carries a prize money of Rs 15 lakh.

Dhronacharya life-time award was given to TP Ouseph (Athletics), Sarkar Talwar (Cricket), Sarpal Singh (Hockey), Ashan Kumar (Kabaddi), Tapan Kumar Panigrahi (Swimming).

Dhronacharya Award in regular category was given to Radhakrishnan Nair P (Athletics), Sandhya Gurung (Boxing), Pritam Siwach (Hockey), Jai Prakash Nautiyal (Para-shooting), Subramanian Raman (Table Tennis).

Dhyan Chand Award for life-time achievement was presented to Lekha KC (Boxing), Abhijeet Kunte (Chess), Davinder Singh Garcha (Hockey), Vikas Kumar (Kabaddi), Sajjan Singh

Three-time Paralympic medal-winning javelin thrower Devendra Jhajharia, former cricketer Venkatesh Prasad, and former boxing world champion Laishram Sarita Devi were the part of this year’s awards selection committee which was headed by Justice (Retd) Mukundakam Sharma.

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