Ours is a quite temperamental nation, where people want to honor failure or success with instant bricks or bouquets. The same mentality prevails while nominating a name for an award as prestigious as the Bharat Ratna. Vishwanathan Anand is back in news as a should-be nominee, whereas Sachin Tendulkar was in consideration since his hundreth hundred. I’m not implying that their body of work should not be acknowledged, but are we doing justice to the likes of the late hockey master Dhyan Chand, who guided India to three Olympic gold medals?
Agreed that we just cannot rule out sportspersons from the list, with the revised selection criteria accepting this fact that the people who sweat it out for our nation need to be applauded. But why only one overly-hyped popular sport/sportsperson being backed up by the majority, while a few hands raise for others? Also, players who are still playing are being nominated, players who’ve got potential to touch greater heights. I mean, they still have a good way to go before they receive this honor, while there are others in the dusk of their life who need a token of appreciation and remembrance. Our country (and we people) haven’t been so fair to Dhyan Chand, who lived his last days in extreme poverty. Shouldn’t he be bestowed with this award more than anyone else?
A few other names popping up for this honor include Geet Sethi, Milkha Singh, Bishan Singh Bedi, and also Michael Ferreira. The debate of ‘Who’s the greatest sportsperson’ is totally useless, and nonsensical too, as every player has left his deep footprint in his respective field, and is not subjected to a third person’s judgement. All I’m saying is, as Sachin and Anand continue to squeeze their juices, there are others all set to become pulp. Honor them before it’s too late.