Indian para shuttler Pramod Bhagat, who has qualified for the Tokyo Paralympics, has been recommended for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, the country's highest sporting honour, by the Odisha government.
The department of sports and youth services (DSYS) of Odisha has also recommended the Indian women's hockey team vice-captain Deep Grace Ekka for the Arjuna Award.
"DSYS has recommended the names of #Odia para shuttler @PramodBhagat83 and current @TheHockeyIndia's vice-captain Deep Grace Ekka for the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award and Arjuna Award respectively, for the year 2021," the department tweeted.
Bhagat, currently ranked no 1 in SL3 category, was awarded the Arjuna Award in 2019. He had won 12 gold, 5 silver and 4 bronze medals in 2019, including the World Championship title. At the Dubai Para Badminton tournament early this year, Bhagat had claimed two golds and a bronze medal and remains hopeful of a medal at the Tokyo Paralympics, where badminton is being introduced for the first time.
Ekka, 27, on the other hand, has 150 international caps and is a vital cog in Indian women's hockey team. She was part of the silver-medal winning Indian side in 2018 Asian Games.