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|August 23, 2001||
Jalaluddin decries Milkha's remarks
Hockey Olympian Jalaluddin on Thursday described as "unfortunate" former sprinter Milkha Singh's statement that the Arjuna awards are given to second class players.
"The statements by Milkha Singh on the awards are not in keeping with sportsman spirit," Jalaluddin, who has also been honoured with the life-time achievement award, told a press conference in Bhopal.
The award is a national honour and rejecting it amounts to insulting the award as well as the nation, he said.
"The awards are a matter of honour and dignity," he said, adding that no player, howsover big he may think of himself, should say he is bigger than any award.
The 1984 Los Angeles Olympics right winger, whose playing days ended in 1987, said statements like the one by Milkha Singh would not be of any help or encouragement to youngsters who look at sports as something in which no politics is involved.
Asked if there was some politics behind Milkha Singh's statement, he said: "I do not know what prompted the former athelete to make such a statement.
"In choosing recipients of awards, some deserving players may have been left out," Jalaluddin admitted, but said it should not be used as an excuse to tarnish the whole sporting community.
Mail Sports Editor
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