Several known personalities paid tributes to the Indian hockey legend.

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted the sportspersons on Saturday on the occasion of National Sports Day and also paid tribute to legendary Indian hockey player Major Dhyan Chand.

National Sports Day is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of Major Dhyan Chand. PM Modi took to twitter to share his thoughts on the 115th birth anniversary of the Indian hockey legend.

PM Modi tweeted, “Today, on National Sports Day, we pay tributes to Major Dhyan Chand, whose magic with the hockey stick can never be forgotten. This is also a day to laud the outstanding support given by the families, coaches and support staff towards the success of our talented athletes.”

“National Sports Day is a day to celebrate the remarkable achievements of all those exemplary sportspersons who have represented India in various sports and made our nation proud. Their tenacity and determination are outstanding.”

PM Modi said that his government is making numerous efforts to popularise sports and support sporting talent in the country. He remarked, “Government of India is making numerous efforts to popularise sports and support sporting talent in India. At the same time, I urge everyone to make sports and fitness exercises a part of their daily routine. There are many benefits of doing so. May everyone be happy and healthy!.”

Union home minister Amit Shah also paid tribute to Major Dhyan Chand and greeted Indian athletes. He tweeted, “Tributes to wizard of hockey Major Dhyan Chand ji on his jayanti. A phenomenal legend, who won three Olympic gold medals & mesmerised millions through his magical technique. His talent, achievements & devotion towards the motherland continues to inspire the generations to come.”

“On National Sports Day, I salute all our sportsperson who have been making India proud through their passion & hard-work. Modi govt is committed and playing an instrumental role in promoting sports and nurturing the young talent through initiatives like Khelo India & Fit India.”

The Government of India confers Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award, Arjun Award and Dronacharya Award to the top Indian athletes on National Sports Day at the Rashtrapati Bhawan. However, the ceremony will take place virtually in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Sports minister Kiren Rijiju paid tribute to the Indian legend at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in New Delhi. He said, “Today is National Sports Day and I pay my tribute to the ‘The Wizard of Indian Hockey’ Major Dhyan Chand on his Birth Anniversary. The great sportsman displayed unparalleled dedication and skills in Hockey to bring accolades and honour to India.”

Cricketer Rohit Sharma, Indian women’s hockey team captain Rani Rampal, Table Tennis star Manika Batra, wrestler Vinesh Phogat and Paralympian Mariyappan Thangavelu are being conferred with Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award this year.