Virat Kohli loses to Sakshi Malik, PV Sindhu in Khel Ratna race

Virat Kohli India
India captain Virat Kohli gestures for his outfielders. (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)

Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award is given to the sportsperson who has produced spectacular and most outstanding performances over the period of four years and it carries a cash amount of Rs 7.5 lakh. The Khel Ratna winner will receive the award from President Pranab Mukherjee on National Sports Day on August 29.

Indian Ace shooter Jitu Rai & Indian Woman gymnast Dipa Karmakar names were recommended for the prestigious award by the selection panel appointed by the Sports Ministry.


Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli’s name was also discussed but the names of Karmakar, Jitu, Sakshi Malik, PV Sindhu were preferred since this is an Olympic year, according to sources.

However, It has also been decided that during Olympic years any sportsperson who wins a medal, will be automatically conferred for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award. Sakshi Malik and Shuttler Sindhu will be recomended with Khel Ratna as Malik won the bronze and Sindhu assured a medal for India, reaching the finals of Badminton.

Indian legendary batsman Sachin Tendulkar & limited-overs skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni are the only cricketers to be awarded with Khel Ratna since the inception of this prestigious award.

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List of award recipients, showing the year, and discipline(s)
Year Recipient(s) Discipline(s)
1991–92 Viswanathan Anand Chess
1992–93 Geet Sethi Billiards
1993–94 Cdr. Homi D. Motivala Yachting (Team Event)
1993–94 Lt. Cdr. P. K. Garg Yachting (Team Event)
1994–95 Karnam Malleswari Weightlifting
1995–96 Nameirakpam Kunjarani Weightlifting
1996–97 Leander Paes Tennis
1997–98 Sachin Tendulkar Cricket
1998–99 Jyotirmoyee Sikdar Athletics
1999–2000 Dhanraj Pillay Hockey (Men)
2000–01 Pullela Gopichand Badminton
2001 Abhinav Bindra Shooting
2002 K. M. Beenamol Athletics
2002 Anjali Bhagwat Shooting
2003 Anju Bobby George Athletics
2004 Lt. Col Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore Shooting
2005 Pankaj Advani Billiards and Snooker
2006 Manavjit Singh Sandhu Shooting
2007 Mahendra Singh Dhoni Cricket
2008 No award
2009 Mary Kom Boxing (Women)
2009 Vijender Singh Boxing
2009 Sushil Kumar Wrestling
2010 Saina Nehwal Badminton
2011 Gagan Narang Shooting
2012 Vijay Kumar Shooting
2012 Yogeshwar Dutt Wrestling
2013 Ronjan Sodhi Shooting
2014 No award
2015 Sania Mirza Tennis