The three-time Paralympic medalist Devendra Jhajharia along with the former Indian cricketer and the ex-world champion boxer Sarita Devi have officially been named into the selection committee for the National Sports Awards of 2021.
The selection committee shall also include hockey coach Baldev Singh, the Sports Authority of Indian Director General Sandip Pradhan and two senior journalists Vikrant Gupta and Vijay Lokapally. The retired Supreme Court judge Justice Mukundakum Sharma has been selected to be the chairperson of the committee. As stated by the sports ministry in a circular, Justice Sharma will be accompanied by former Indian women’s cricket team captain Anjum Chopra and former shooter Anjali Bhagwat.
Jhajharia was the most recently active among the others selected in the committee as he added to his medal tally of two golds in 2004 and 2006 by winning silver in the javelin throw in the recently held Olympic Games at Tokyo last month. The formed committee shall be meeting in the upcoming days to decide the winners of the awards. The Indian government had decided to hold back and delay the National Sports Awards to see the performances of the Indian athletes in both the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
The delay was fruitful as India notched up historic results in both events with an overall medal tally of seven in the Olympic Games and a record haul of 19 medals in the Paralympics that included five gold.