Punia Not To Go To Court Against Ministry’s Decision On Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award


New Delhi: On the advise of his mentor Yogeshwar Dutt, star wrestler Bajrang Punia is likely to back down from his stance of going to court against Sports Ministry’s decision to ignore him for the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award. Dutt advised him to concentrate on his preparation for next month’s World Championships.

Snubbed for the country’s highest sporting honour, Bajrang on Thursday met Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, who had assured that his case will be considered.

The 24-year-old wrestler, who won gold at the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games, had said if he doesn’t get a favourable reply from the Sports Minister, he will be forced to knock the doors of court to get justice.

But with the Sports Ministry unlikely bow down to his pressure, Yogeshwar said he has advised Bajrang to move forward and concentrate on his preparation for the World Championships.

“It was injustice to Bajrang as he deserved the Khel Ratna this year. We met the Sports Minister and he said he will talk to the selection committee. But I have advised Bajrang against going to the court as it will hamper his World Championship preparations,” Yogeshwar said.

Olympic medallist Yogeshwar accompanied Bajrang during yesterday’s meeting with Rathore. A source in the Sports Ministry too said that Rathore is unlikely to make a last minute addition to the list.

“The Minister met Bajrang and wanted to know his grievances. He explained to Bajrang why his name was not considered. Even though he has promised Bajrang to look into the matter, it is unlikely that any changes will be made,” the source said. Hurt by the snub, Bajrang had threatened to move court as he feels he too deserved the award.

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