Tendulkar should be awarded Bharat Ratna after Dhyan Chand: Chouhan

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had earlier said Sachin Tendulkar should shun IPL if awarded Bharat Ratna Getty Images

Bhopal: Aug 29, 2011

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Monday said that hockey legend Major Dhyanchand should be conferred the ‘Bharat Ratna’, India’s highest civilian honour, ahead of cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar.

Remembering Dhyan Chand on the occasion of his birthday on Monday, Chouhan said, “After witnessing Dhyanchand’s magic with a hockey stick, Hitler described him as “hockey ka jadugar” and the country celebrates his birthday as National Sports Day.

“Therefore, it will be appropriate if Dhyanchand gets the Bharat Ratna before any other player. Of course, Tendulkar should also get the coveted honour,” he said after distributing awards to state’s sportspersons.

Chouhan said politics should not enter in the field of sports.

He said that the cash component of sports awards would be doubled from next year.

Following the announcement, the cash component of Vishwamitra Award being given to a sports instructor will become Rs one lakh, instead of Rs 50,000, and the prize money for the Eklavya Awards will increase to Rs 50,000 from the present Rs 25,000.

Chouhan felicitated 15 players with Eklavya Samman, nine with Vikram Award, three instructors with Vishwamitra Award and also gave the Life-Time Achievement Award posthumously to Dr Shafqat Mohammad Khan.(PTI)