Chandigarh, Aug 22: A 27-strong list of athletes was announced for this year’s Arjuna award on Friday, and a day later, Olympics bronze-medallist Sakshi Malik expressed her disappointment of not being given the Arjuna Award.
The Sports Ministry on Friday (Aug 21) announced the 27 names, who will be bestowed with the prestigious Arjuna Award this year. Last week, the Justice (retd) Mukundakam Sharma-led selection committee had recommended 29 names for the prestigious award to the ministry.
In a tweet directed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sakshi asked what more she needed to do to receive the prestigious award.
"Honourable Prime Minister @narendramodi jee and honourable sports minister @kirenrijiju jee. I am honoured that I have been bestowed upon with Khel Ratna. Every player has a dream to get all awards. For this the player toils very hard,” she said in a tweet in Hindi.
“I too have a dream that prior to my name Arjuna awardee is written. What more medals should I bring so that I am honoured with the Arjuna Award? Or I may not be fortunate to get this award in my life as a wrestler?” she asked in her tweet.
Earlier on Thursday, the 2016 Rio Games medallist had claimed that she got only assurances from the state government, but no job or the promised plot of land. “So far, I have not got any plot (of land) nor a job has been given to me. I had met the Sports Minister and the Chief Minister earlier, but only got assurances,” Malik had said on Thursday. Haryana's Home Minister Anil Vij, however, on Friday had rejected Malik's claim that she has got only assurances but no job was given to her by the state government. Vij had said on Friday, “We gave a cheque of Rs 2.5 crore the day she landed in India (after the Olympics event)”.
It had been learnt that Olympic bronze-winning wrestler Sakshi Malik and former world champion weightlifter Mirabai Chanu too had gotten the committee's nod but the final decision had been left on sports minister Kiren Rijiju as both the women are former Khel Ratna awardees.
While Sakshi won the Khel Ratna in 2016 for her Olympic bronze in the Rio Olympics, Mirabai was conferred with the honour in 2018 along with India captain Virat Kohli for her world championship gold medal.
(With inputs from PTI)