Bharat Ratna for Sardar Balbir Singh Sr.

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Did you know that Indian hockey veteran Sardar Balbir Singh Sr. is regarded as one of the greatest field hockey players of all time and is widely regarded as the sport's greatest ever centre-forward?

He is a three-time Olympic gold champion having played a key role in India's wins in London (1948), Helsinki (1952) (as Vice-Captain), and Melbourne Olympics (1956) (as Captain).

His Olympic record for most goals scored by an individual in an Olympic men's hockey final remains unbeaten since 1952!! He set this record when he scored five goals in India's 6-1 victory over the Netherlands in the gold medal game of the 1952 Olympic Games.

In 1975 he was the manager of the victorious Indian World Cup hockey team.

In a national poll conducted by the Patriot newspaper in the year 1982 he was adjudged to be the Indian Sports Person of the Century.

In 2012 he was chosen as one of the 16 Iconic Olympians of all time, whose example "tells of human strength and endeavor, of passion, determination, hard work and achievement and demonstrates the values of the Olympic Movement". He is not only the only Indian but also the only Asian in that most coveted list.

Born on 10 October 1924 in pre-independent India, his biggest mission in life has been to see India’s flag flying high. Nothing gives him more happiness still at the age of 94 to talk about the moments when his teams won gold, the flag was hoisted high and the national anthem played on international platforms. 

On 12th August 1948 the Indian Flag was hoisted and the National Anthem was played for the first time ever as a Independent Nation on the world stage when India won gold in hockey at London Olympics, defeating England our erstwhile occupier in its own national capital. Balbir Singh Sr played a very crucial role in the final, scoring 2 out of the 4 goals India scored.

On this 12th August 2019, the 71st anniversary of that historic day we request and urge the government and Prime Minister of India, Mr Narendra Modi to honour this living legend (94) with an award no one deserves more, the BHARAT RATNA!!!

Even in his mid 90s, he is spreading love for the country. Listening to his stories awakes love for country and motivates all to work towards uplifting the nation. His life story can help the youth to make right choices for the over-all development of the nation. For someone who is a a global and Indian icon and is continuing to do a lot, we all should help get him what this true GEM deserves.