ArrayNew Delhi, Aug 14 (IANS) The sports ministry on Friday confirmed that tennis icon Sania Mirza will be awarded the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, the country’s highest sporting honour, while 17 others, including cricketer Rohit Sharma, hockey goalkeeper P.R. Sreejesh and ace shooter Jitu Rai will be given Arjuna awards.
Apart from the quartet, wrestlers Bajrang and Babita Kumari, men’s singles shuttler Kidambi Srikanth, boxer Mandeep Jangra, rower Sawarn Singh, 400 metres runner M.R. Poovamma, archer Sandeep Kumar, 2014 Commonwealth Games medal winning gymnast Dipa Karmakar, kabaddi players Manjeet Chillar and Abhilasha Shashikant Mhatre, roller skater Anup Kumar Yama, wightlifter S. Sathish Kumar, wushu athlete Y. Sanathoi Devi and para-swimmer Sharath M. Gaekwad will also be given the annual Arjuna awards.
“A large number of nominations were received for these awards this year, which were considered by the Selection Committee headed by Justice V.K. Bali, former Chief Justice of Kerala High Court and consisting of eminent sportspersons and sports administrators,” the ministry said in a statement.