History of Arjuna Award
Before Khel Ratna, Arjuna Awards was the most prestigious award for a sportsperson in India. Instituted in 1961, the award acknowledges the outstanding performances of Indian sportspersons.
Eligibility for The Arjuna Awards
According to the revised rules, to be eligible a Sportsperson should be a consistent good performer for previous three years at the international level. From 2001 the award is conferred on sportsperson who come under any of these three categories:
Criteria for Receiving an Arjuna Award
The Arjuna Awardees are decided by a Selection Committee comprising of a Chairperson, who is a sports person of eminence and 12 other members distinguished in the field of sports including 5 Olympians and 4 Arjuna Awardees from different disciplines, 2 Sports Administrators and a Member-Secretary of the Committee who would be the Director/Deputy Secretary (Sports) from the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. The Chairperson of the Committee in consultation with the Member-Secretary may constitute panels from among its members to assist the Committee in choosing the winners. Under the scheme, the awardee is given a bronze statuette of Arjuna, a scroll and a cash prize of 3 lakh rupees along with a monogram, a blazer and a tie.
Only the international level performance of sportspersons is taken into account when deciding the awardees. Sports persons testing positive in the test on drugs banned by the International Olympic Committee in any laboratory accredited by International Olympic Committee will not be eligible for the Arjuna Awards. The maximum number of awards given in a year would be 15 (one award in each discipline). However, in the year succeeding Asian Games and Commonwealth Games an exception could be made for a second award being given to a sports person in those disciplines in which more than 5 medals have been won in the Asian/ Commonwealth Games.
The nominations for the award will be invited by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports from all National Sports Federations recognized by the Government of India, Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and State/UT Governments in the month of January each year. As per the revised scheme, the last date for the receipt of nominations will be 31st May of the same year.
Arjuna Awardees for Kabaddi