Mirabai Chanu and Virat Kohli will share Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award for 2018

Chanu and Kohli

The National Sports Awards 2018 were announced by the Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports on 20th September, 2018.

Cricket captain Virat Kohli and world champion weightlifter Mirabai Chanu will jointly be conferred with Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award 2018, India’s highest sporting honour.

The Ministry received a large number of nominations for these awards this year, however, the nominations were considered by the Selection Committees consisting of a former Olympian, Arjuna Awardees, Dronacharya Awardees, Dhyan Chand Awardees, Sport Journalists, Experts and sports administrators, as reported by Jagran Josh.

The Selection Committee for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award and Arjuna Awards was headed by Justice Indermeet Kaur Kochhar (Former Judge of High Court of Delhi High Court). The Selection Committee for Dronacharya Awards and Dhyan Chand Awards was headed by Justice Mukul Mudgal (Former Chief Justice of High Court of Punjab and Haryana).

The Selection Committee for Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar was headed by Rahul Bhatnagar, Secretary (Sports). The Selection Committee for MAKA Trophy was headed by Ashok Kumar, former Olympian.

Kohli will become the third Indian cricketer after legendary Sachin Tendulkar (1997) and the talismanic former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni (2007) once the sports ministry officially accepts the committee’s recommendation.


While a regular presence in international events since 2014 in the 48 kg category, Chanu has won the World Championships and multiple medals at the Commonwealth Games. She was also awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India for her contributions to the sport.



The Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna is the highest sporting honour of India. The award is named after Rajiv Gandhi, former Prime Minister of India who served the office from 1984 to 1989. The recipient(s) is/are selected by a committee constituted by the Ministry and is honoured for their “spectacular and most outstanding performance in the field of sports over a period of four years” at international level. The award comprises a medallion, a citation, and a cash prize of Rupees 7.5 lakh.



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