National Sports Day – August 29
August 29 is observed as National Sports Day in India also known as Rashtriya Khel Divas to mark the birth anniversary of Hockey legend Major Dhyan Chand.
Major Dhyan Chand was the greatest hockey player of all time he helped India to win three Olympic Gold Medals in Field Hockey. In 1928, 1932 and 1936 India dominated field hockey. He is also known as “The Wizard” or “The Magician” of hockey for his superb ability to control the ball. He was known for his extraordinary goal-scoring feats and scored over 400 goals in his career from 1926 to 1948. He has helped India to be known in the international hockey arena and is a legendary figure in the Indian and world hockey.
The most noted memorial for him is the National Sport day celebrations on his birthday and Major Dhyan Chand Award, the highest award for lifetime achievement in sports and games in India.
On this day President of India honors sportsperson who have excelled in the field of sports. These honors include Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Dhyanchand Award and Dronacharya Awards, besides Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Award, Arjuna Award at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, India.
The Dhyan Chand Award is the highest award for lifetime achievement in sports in India. The award is given on an annual basis to sportspersons who have not only contributed through their performance but have worked hard for the upliftment of the sport even after retiring.
How is National Sports day celebrated
National Sports Day is specially celebrated in academic institutions and sports academies, when various sports events are held for sports like football, cricket, lawn tennis, volleyball, marathon, basketball, etc.
Primarily all schools across the country celebrate their annual sports day on this day. This is done with the aim of igniting the morale of reverence and amazement of the game in the minds of young children and it provides them with education about not only one of the most important sports in India.
Apart from the remembrance of the legendary hockey wizard Dhyan Chand, on National Sports Day, youths are expected to one day not only raise their name but also raise the name of their country.
National Sports Day supports healthy lifestyles and emphasizes the agenda of the Sports Committee so that as many people as possible get access to sports.
National Sports day 2020
In 2019 Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi launched the Fit India Movement on National Sports Day which was held at Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium, New Delhi. He on ‘Mann Ki Baat‘ episode announced about the launching of the ‘Fit India Movement’ in the country and said: “I want to see you fit and make you fitness-conscious”. Under the campaign of the Fit India Movement, many events will be held on this day to promote fitness.
The “Fitness Pledge” reads
“I promise to myself that I will devote time for physical activity and sports every day and I will encourage my family members and neighbors to be physically fit and make India a fit nation.”