NEW DELHI, Aug 21: The Sports Ministry on Friday decided against bestowing the Arjuna award on former Khel Ratna winners Sakshi Malik and Mirabai Chanu, pruning the list to 27 but accepted an unprecedented five recommendations for the country�s highest sporting honour this year.
Last week, the Justice (retd) Mukundakam Sharma-led selection committee had recommended 29 names for the Arjuna Award to the Sports Ministry.
The list also included Rio Olympics bronze medal-winning wrestler Sakshi and 2017 weightlifting world champion Mirabai, but the decision on bestowing the Arjuna on them was left to the discretion of Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju.
This was due to the fact that they had already won the Khel Ratna, the country�s highest sporting honour.
The strange decision to include their names raised eyebrows and attracted criticism.
List of awards:
Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award: Rohit Sharma (Cricket), Mariyappan T. (Para Athletics), , Manika Batra (Table Tennis), Vinesh (Wrestling), Rani (Hockey)
Dronacharya Award (Lifetime category): Dharmendra Tiwary (Archery), Purushotham Rai (Athletics), Shiv Singh (Boxing), Romesh Pathania (Hockey), Krishan Kumar Hooda (Kabaddi), Vijay Bhalchandra Munishwar (Para Powerlifting), Naresh Kumar (Tennis), Om Parkash Dahiya (Wrestling).
Regular category: Jude Felix Sebastian (Hockey), Yogesh Malviya (Mallakhamb), Jaspal Rana (Shooting), Kuldeep Kumar Handoo (Wushu), Gaurav Khanna (Para Badminton)
Arjuna Award: Atanu Das (Archery), Dutee Chand (Athletics), Satwik Sairaj Rankireddy (Badminton), Chirag Chandrasekhar Shetty (Badminton), Vishesh Bhriguvanshi (Basketball), Subedar Manish Kaushik (Boxing), Lovlina Borgohain (Boxing), Ishant Sharma (Cricket), Deepti Sharma (Cricket), Sawant Ajay Anant (Equestrian), Sandesh Jhingan (Football), Aditi Ashok (Golf), Akashdeep Singh (Hockey), Deepika (Hockey), Deepak (Kabaddi), Kale Sarika Sudhakar (Kho Kho), Dattu Baban Bhokanal (Rowing), Manu Bhaker (Shooting), Saurabh Chaudhary (Shooting), Madhurika Suhas Patkar (Table Tennis), Divij Sharan (Tennis), Shiva Keshavan (Winter Sports), Divya Kakran (Wrestling), Rahul Aware (Wrestling), Suyash Narayan Jadhav (Para Swimming), Sandeep Para (Athletics) Manish Narwal (Para Shooting)
Dhyan Chand Award: Kuldip Singh Bhullar (Athletics), Jincy Philips (Athletics), Pradeep Shrikrishna Gandhe (Badminton), Trupti Murgunde (Badminton), N. Usha (Boxing), Lakha Singh (Boxing), Sukhvinder Singh Sandhu (Football), Ajit Singh (Hockey), Manpreet Singh (Kabaddi), J. Ranjith Kumar (Para Athletics), Satyaprakash Tiwari (Para Badminton), Manjeet Singh (Rowing), Late Shri Sachin Nag (Swimming), Nandan P Bal (Tennis), Netarpal Hooda (Wrestling). � PTI
Lovlina Borgohain sixth: Boxer Lovlina Borgohain became the sixth sportsperson from Assam to be selected for Arjuna Award.
Earlier, Bhogeswar Barua (1966, Athletics), Monalisa Baruah (1987, TT), Jayanta Talukdar (2006, Archery), Shiva Thapa (2016, Boxing), Hima Das (2018, Athletics) were the other sportspersons from Assam to receive the prestigious award. - SPORTS REPORTER