Plight of the Indian Moon

On 27th August, whole Cricketing world celebrated centenary of THE Don, Sir Donald George Bradman, the man who ended his career 60 years ago but even now each and every person who has even a rudimentary knowledge of Cricket knows name of the person.

Ponting, said on the occasion that he is much greater than Phelps, he could only manage one more gold than the second person but Bradman’s almost double the second person, but what about the person who was exceptional by even his standards, doesn’t he  deserve some mention anywhere ,any time?

I am talking about Dhyan Chand, THE HOCKEY MAGICIAN, he has been the only Numero Uno, India has ever produced. Even though I am a devotee of the God, Sachin but he isn’t no Numero Uno, he and Lara were always considered the best batsman in 90s, in 2000s came Ponting, then even Dravid but 60 years after Dhyan Chand’s career finished, nobody has seen any anything which comes even close to him, he was , is and will always remain exceptional. He is the magician of Hockey.

While growing up, I listened to some stories that many times during matches; his Hockey sticks were replaced by Opposition teams believing he had some glue on his stick. He gave India 3 Gold Medals, numerous records and uncountable moments to cherish which I don’t think any other person must have managed since then, in return what India gave him was, a death in anonymity and neglect. The authorities couldn’t care less about the person who shone like a “Chand” in the sky and a nationalist who rejected Hitler’s proposal of a much higher post in German Army because he had to play for India and no other country.

200 runs on a tour is an average for some Indian Cricket players these days, what do you call a person who scored more than 200 goals on a tour? I don’t think you can think of any other adjective than The Dhyan Chand.

I saw many images of the celebrations which happened in Australia on the centenary of the Don but I don’t seem to recall any images of any such celebration happening 3 years back in 2005, on the centenary of Dhyan Chand.

All this can be defended by people saying that Hockey has no market these days and since this is a money hungry world so nobody would care about him. I was shocked at seeing he didn’t get Bharat Ratna, I was almost sure that this guy would have got a Bharat Ratna, Lata Mangeshkar got it. What has she done to make our country proud on the international scene?  Agreed  she has provided entertainment to generations of people in India, easing their lives in some way but isn’t there anything as National Honour, National Glory? Are all these things seriously an issue of past, how can you not recognize this person’s achievements? He got Padma Vibhushan which many people have got

Even after all this has happened, we still ask questions, Why doesn’t India win in Olympics? Why do we even question? Isnt the answer quite obvious? We just don’t know how to respect our sports person. We are just a county of lazy brainy sleuths who can sit in chairs, type all this rubbish, talk all day long, give our opinion on each and every thing (which I am doing right now), fight with people on petty issues but don’t dare to take action when it comes upon our country. After all this we blame China for acquiring our land, Pakistan for sponsoring terrorism while we ourselves forget about all such things as soon as possible and are ready to be fu**ed again. This is getting diverted from the topic, so lets finish this.

Once again, I hope that not on 100th Birthday but may be on some other occasion Indian Govt decided to honour the man posthumously. Agreed, his birthday is celebrated as Sports Day but what has been done to publicise this day. Atleast Educational Institutes should celebrate their Sports Day on this date and try to remember the great man but I am very curious about knowing whether people even know the existence of a day known as Sports Day, while you will never forget V-Day, Friendship Day and even obnoxious days like Rose Day, Chocolate Day and what not!

Btw, I am not sure many people know why he is Dhyan “Chand”. So I thought of sharing this, This was a name given by his first Coach who was so impressed by his play that he said “Tu  Chand ki tarah Chamkega” and hence we had the name Dhyan Chand.

One of the most memorable dedication to the guy was given by the people of Vienna where there is a statue of the man with a hockey stick and having 4 hands, to specify the extra ordinary skills of the man. While in India, in my 21 years of existence, having visited almost all the major cities, I have never ever saw a statue of Dhyan Chand.

And still we dare to ask Questions!!

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7 thoughts on “Plight of the Indian Moon

  1. Hi Himank 🙂 Very few remember Hockey as played in Dhyan Chand’s era. The developed nations now playing hockey and winning the medals have made sure of that. Artistic hockey with its sinewy wrists, body fakes, quicksilver dribbling, arching scoops and lightning reverse flicks, is indeed lost for ever. So are the strict codes for obstruction, intimidation, turning, wrong side and other fouls. Hurrah!!! Power Hockey is here and Artistic Hockey, a game that pure brawn could not compete with, is buried. Corrupt godfathers of Indian hockey today have no values or respect for someone like Dhyan Chand. And for record, Don Bradman did see Dhyan Chand play (Adelaide, 1935) and remarked ‘He scores goals like runs in cricket!’ Cheers.

  2. Great post, to the point and precise. Dhyan Chand deserves a Bharat Ratna, although I don’t subscribe to your using Lata Mangeshkar as a counter example. But he certainly deserves it more than politicians like V.V.Giri, Moraraji Desai, M.G.Ramachandran.

    Reading this post makes me feel guilty. Being a member of the Sports Council, I should have taken some initiative on the National Sports Day.

  3. Dhoni getting a Bharat Ratna …. I wanna laugh out loud…. I remember there was a chapter in our school text-books on dhyan chand…. but that’s all i’ve ever heard of him….. only if you are really interested .you do some research and come to know more about him….. unlike any other modern day heroes…. whose images keep popping up in media every other day….. but again….. I’m just voicing my opinions when some one like you’ve pointed this thing out……. not other wise

  4. “Isnt the answer quite obvious? ”

    I disgaree. The reason you’ve stated is not so obvious, nor one of the major reasons as to why we don’t have a lot of athletes.

    But you initiative in taking up Dhyan Chand’s issue is commendable.

  5. great post Himank…

    but you have to consider another thing, in the times when Dhyan Chand was playing, India hardly did anything for any sportsperson, leave alone Cricket… till 1980s Cricket & Hockey were at par, and then India’s world cup victory & the penetration of TV in the general public coincided.. that gave the boost to Cricket at the expense of Hockey…

    but what you say is true, even if Dhyan Chand was not felicitated when he was alive, it is high time now that he be given the honour he accords…

  6. @ All : First of all, Well I am sorry to have taken Lata Mangeshkar’s example, I never said she didnt deserve Bharat ratna, but would say she deserves it less than Dhyan Chand (atleast acoording to me and people can have different opinions)
    According to the awards, conferred on him, he is equivalent to Sachin and I think the person should be placed eons above Sachin, because there have been players of the calibre of Sachin in Cricket but none of his calibre in Hockey!!
    He is the Don Of Hockey!!

    @Prithvi : Hmm.. ya thats the state of Hockey these days and one of the reason why Asians are lagging and european nations are heading Hockey Scene..
    And ya I was aware of that incident, really a grt one for every Indian

    @ Aniket : Thanks yaar… well ya, we could say those guys are much less deserving than even her.

    @ Kulbir : This was more on the Hockey side 😛

    @ Pankaj : Ya man, thats true nobody cares about people like him now..

    @ Maroo : Well, this might not be the only reason but this is the outcome of one of the basic reason behind India’s failure everywhere, NEGLECT of sports person, no faclities provided, all these are the main points, along with an inclination of Indians to be lazyy!!

    @ Kunal : Thanks 🙂
    Hmm.. ya exactly, atleast now govt should start thinking about sports and the legends of sports!!

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