Olympic silver medallist PV Sindhu, bronze medallist Sakshi Malik, Gymnast Dipa Karmakar and shooter Jitu Rai have been awarded the honour Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award on August 29 as per policy decision by the government of India. The Government of India announced 4 names for the prestigious Khel Ratna award, the highest sporting honour.
While shuttler PV Sindhu created history by becoming the first woman athlete from India to grab a silver in the Rio Olympics, Sakshi bagged a bronze in the 58kg wrestling. Sakshi was the first Indian woman ever to win a wrestling medal(bronze) at the Rio Games.
Dipa Karmakar, India’s first female gymnast to qualify for Olympics, went on to miss a bronze by 0.15 points but her clean finish in the high-risk Produnova vault won the hearts of the nation, Jitu Rai entered the final of the men’s 10m air pistol before ending up eighth but could not advance to the same stage in the 50m pistol in the Rio Games. Jitu, on the other hand, was ranked third in the world in the men’s 10m air pistol.
The Indian government confirmed that it will confer Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award to PV Sindhu, Dipa Karmakar, Jitu Rai and Sakshi Malik for their exceptional performances.
The Khel Ratna Award is given for spectacular and most outstanding performance in the field of sports by a sportsperson over a period of four years. Apart from a medal and a citation, the Khel Ratna Awardee will receive a cash prize of Rs 7.5 lakh. President Pranab Mukherjee will give away the awards at Rashtrapati Bhavan on August 29, which is celebrated as the National Sports Day.