The Arjuna Awards were instituted in 1961 by the government of India to recognize outstanding achievement in National sports. The award carries a cash prize of Rs. 500,000, a bronze statuette of Arjuna and a scroll.
Over the years the scope of the award has been expanded and a large number of sportspersons who belonged to the pre-Arjun Award era were also included in the list. Further, the number of disciplines for which the award is given was increased to include indigenous games and the physically handicapped category.
The Government has recently revised the scheme for the Arjun Award. As per the revised guidelines, to be eligible for the Award, a sportsperson should not only have had good performance consistently for the previous three years at the international level with excellence for the year for which the Award is recommended, but should also have shown qualities of leadership, sportsmanship and a sense of discipline
- From the year 2001, the award is given only in disciplines falling under the following categories:
- Olympic Games / Asian Games / Commonwealth Games / World Cup / World Championship Disciplines and Cricket
- Indigenous Games
- Sports for the Physically Challenged
In India there are a lot of sports that have been considered as the main stream or most popular sports. Among these sports Athletic, Hockey, Football, Cricket, Boxing, Chess, Basketball, Tennis, Table Tennis, Badminton, Swimming, Volleyball, Shooting, etc are the leading. However there are some other sports as well that might not not be that much popular that have been played in India for quite a very long period of time. Some of them are Equestrian, Rowing, Cycling, Gymnastics, Archery, Judo, Golf Kabaddi, Carom Billiards and snookers etc.
In mid-August 2011, 19 athletes were announced as Arjuna recipients; the high number due to the inclusion of both the 2010 Commonwealth Games and 2010 Asian Games in the Arjuna qualifying year.
Arjuna Award Winners List 2011