Singh, the greatest son of Punjab, continues to represent
qualities that also go onto the making of a sportsperson and
a champion. Ahead of this time in many respects he had the
rare distinction of being the only ruler in that by gone era
who did not act arbitrarily and did not execute a single
citizen of the state in peace time. Such a man indeed
possessed the qualities that called for not only exceptional
leadership in those turbulent times but also had the heart
which could accommodate often conflicting ideas and
interests. When we look at the times he lived in we can’t
fail to notice that during his reign there was not even a
single instance of communal rioting, inequality among the
citizens and disrespect to any shrine or place of worship.
In short as a ruler, he represented the highest virtues
cherished by the noblest of people.
the multifaceted personality of Maharaja Ranjit Singh and
love for sports of his times was fairly predominant.
However, unlike his contemporaries, this love was neither
unbridled nor without respect for certain laws of nature.
Thus, when he once caught a tiger cub during hunting he
could not bear the desperate cry of the mother tigress at
night and commanded the cub to be freed in the nearby
forest. He was a horse rider par excellence and his prowess
can be judged by the number of times his personal courage
and ability to ride in hostile terrains and indifferent
circumstances led to victory of forces that he led. And,
yet, he remained a romantic at heart, a ruler who had the
imagination of ordering 102 gun salutes to the rising of the
moon when the monsoon arrives! Truly he personified the
virtues that any son or daughter of Punjab years for.
Singh award therefore ,are not only a tribute to the great
son of this land of the five rivers but also recognition
that the recipients possess in maple measure some of the
virtues that went into the making of maharaja Ranjit Singh.
These awards are now being bestowed on sportspersons for the
year between 1997 and 2004.state recognition of excellence
in sports has been recognized as an important aspect of its
duty towards the youth, for, it helps in crating an
atmosphere that is conductive to channel sing the energy of
youth towards creative and constructive efforts.
The practice of
extending patronage by the resourceful to promising
sportspersons In Punjab is age old and significantly the
house of Patiala has remained the leader in this respect.
Not only did this house play a pivotal role in spreading,
encouraging and organizing cricket in India but also
spotting talent in disciplines of all sorts. under their
patronage not only eminent wrestlers like Gama earned world
renown and became undisputed champion but music, art and
culture too carved its own brand and niche .the ‘flying
sikh’ Milkha Singh would have remained one of the many
promising athletes in the country but for discerning eye and
whole hearted support for him from a scion of Patiala five
minister Capt. Amarinder Singh has not only continued that
tradition but has also infused greater vigor in making
Punjab the lead state in the country’s march towards
sporting glory. Himself a keen sportsman, he has made his
desire to be made Punjab lead the charge towards an Olympic
gold in the near future, clear in his policies, and the
determination with which they are being implemented and
pursued give sample hope to the sports lovers. His love for
polo and horse riding is also well known .it recently
resulted in bringing back the noble sport of polo to oats
home in north India.
significantly, chief minister Capt. Amarinder Singh has not
only revived the practice of honoring the sportspersons with
maharaja Ranjit Singh award but has also infused new life in
sporting activity with his personal interest in its
promotion at all levels. The award is given to those
sportspersons of the Punjab who have represented the nation
in Olympics, world cup; one day internationals/test matches
in cricket and those who attain medal winning positions in
Asian and/or commonwealth games.
award carried a paltry sum of rs.21,000 only ,a scroll of
honor, a certificate ,a memento bearing the image of
maharaja Ranjit Singh astride a horse in his warrior dress
,a blazer and a color. however, on chief minister
Capt. Amarinder Singh’s suggestion and advice the cash award
has now been enhanced to Rs. one lakh. it is a well deserved
recognition of the blood and sweat that has gone into the
achievements of a sportsperson though it is recognized that
their contribution to society can’t really be measured in
terms of money.
The state of
Punjab is doing its duty towards the youth of the state. it
is now for the youth of the state .it is now for the youth
to respond with performance in the competitive arena that
brings honor to Punjab and glory to the country. As far as
the sports department and the government of Punjab are
concerned, no effort will be spared in extending support to
the state to achieve excellence in their chosen fields. More
honors shall be bestowed upon those, who earn laurels at the
international level and make India take its proud place
among the comity of nations.
List of Award Winners
Reserved with Department of Sports , Punjab, India|Disclaimer