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National Sports Day 2022 – August 29

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The National Sports Day  (Rashtriya Khel Divas) is annually celebrated on 29th August across India to commemorate the birth anniversary of hockey legend Major Dhyan Chand.

  • He was born on 29th August 1905 in Allahabad, British India (Present day Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh).
  • The day aims to spread awareness about the importance of sports to lead a healthy life and honour the sportspersons of India.
  • The president felicitated sports awards such as the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, Arjuna Award, Dronacharya Award, Dhyan Chand Awards etc on the occasion of National Sports Day.


i.The Government of India (GoI) decided to celebrate the birth anniversary of Major Dhyan Chand as the National Sports Day starting from 2012.

ii.The first National Sports Day in India was observed on 29th August 2012.


In August 2021, Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi announced that the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award will be renamed as the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award.


i.On the occasion of the National Sports Day, National Sports Awards are given to the athletes as a recognition for their continuous efforts and discipline in their sports.

ii.The national sports and Adventure awards will be presented on National Sports Day include-Dronacharya Awards, Dhyan Chand Awards, Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar Awards, Arjuna Awards, Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad (MAKA) Trophy.

About  Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna:

The Khel Ratna Award, officially known as the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award,  is the highest sporting honour of India. It is awarded annually by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, instituted in 1991-92.

  • Vishwanath Anand(chess) and Geet Sethi (Billiards) were the inaugural recipients of the award.

About other National Sports awards:

i.The Dhyan Chand Award For Life Time Achievement In Sports And Games instituted in 2002.

  • First recipients of the award(2002) were Shahuraj Birajdar (boxing), Ashok Diwan (hockey), and Aparna Ghosh (basketball).

ii.The Arjuna Award, instituted in 1961, honours athletes for their achievements in previous seasons. It is the second-highest sporting honour of India.
iii.The Dronacharya Award, instituted in 1985, is awarded to the best Indian and International coaches who have contributed to the growth and development of sports in India.


i.On the occasion of National Sports Day on 29th August 2022, the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports (MYAS) and Fit India Mission aim to take the FIT India movement to Schools/Colleges/Ministries/Govt & Pvt Organisations by encouraging them to participate in a grand manner.

ii.The MYAS is conducting the ‘Meet The Champion’ initiative in 26 schools across India on 29th August.

  • ‘Meet the Champions’ is a unique school visit campaign initiated by Olympic gold medallist Neeraj Chopra in December 2021.
  • During the school visit, the champion athlete shares their experiences, life lessons, and tips on how to eat right and also gives an overall inspirational boost to school children.

About Major Dhyan Chand:

i.Major Dhyan Chand (original name Dhyan Singh) was born on 29th August 1905 in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh.

ii.He was a three-time Olympic gold medal winner, was a part of the Indian hockey team which won gold in the 1928(Amsterdam ), 1932(Los Angeles) and 1936(Berlin) editions of the Olympics.

iii.He was the Captain of the Indian hockey team who won the gold medal at the Berlin Olympics In 1936.

  • He was popularly known as the ‘’Hokey Wizard’’ and ‘’the Magician’’.

iv.He was awarded India’s third highest civilian honour Padma Bhushan in 1956.