Today is the birth anniversary of Major Dhyan Chand and to honor his contribution in Indian hockey, 29th of August is celebrated as National Sports Day every year. On this day, The President Of India gives award to sports people for their exceptionally well performances. Arjuna Award, Dronacharya Award, and Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna are given to sportsperson who made our country proud.
On this day last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched 'Khelo India' initiative to pay tribute to the legendary hockey player Najor Dhyan Chand and to greet all sports enthusiasts.
Today also, he took to his Twitter handle and wrote, "Greetings to all sports enthusiasts on National Sports Day. Tributes to the phenomenal hockey player, Major Dhyan Chand Ji on his birth anniversary. I urge people to give priority to sports and fitness related activities, which will contribute towards a healthier India."
Who was Major Dhyan Chand?
He was born on 29 August 1905 in Allahabad. Following the footsteps of his father, he joined the Indian Army. While serving the nation, he took up hockey. He captained India throughout his playing career. And our country won 3 Olympic medals in 1928, 1932, and 1936. in his 22 year long career, he scored over 400 goals.
In 1936, during the Berlin Olympics Finals, he top scored with three goals, contributing to an easy victory of India by defeating Germany with 8-1.
Even after his retirement, he kept contributing to the game. He was the Hockey Coach Chief at the National Institute of Sports in Patiala.
Remembering him on his 114th anniversary, Men’s team coach Harendra Kumar says, “For the rest of the world, he is Dhyan Chand, But for us, he is Dadda. The players respect him because of what he achieved for India. Even toady, when several senior players reach the National stadium for practice, you will see them bowing to his statue, as a mark of respect."
Years have passed and the game of hockey is continuing to bring glory to our nation. The recent example is the ongoing Asian Games in Indonesia. Our hockey players are making records at the ongoing event. Recently, Indian Hockey team beat Hong Kong with 26-0 breaking the 86 year old record. in a face-off with Sri Lanka, India won with 20-0.
Major Dhyan Chand has been an inspiration to all the hockey players till date and will continue to be so!