India’s highest sporting honour, awarded annually Government of India. Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, formerly known as the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award in Sports and Game, started in 1991 with Viswanathan Anand becoming first one to be awarded.

With time, limit on number of awardees in a year changed which was used to be given to just one sportperson in starting. This year in 2021, highest number 12 sportsperson being awarded, on the back of huge success in Olympics and Paralympics games.

List of awardees:

S. No.YearRecipient(s)Discipline(s)Major Achievement (s)
11991–1992Viswanathan AnandChessGrandmaster, multiple times World Champion
21992–1993Geet SethiBilliardsWinner of Billiards World Championships
31993–1994Homi MotivalaYachting (Team event)World Champion in team event in Yachting
41993–1994Pushpendra Kumar GargYachting (Team event)World Champion in team event in Yachting
51994–1995Karnam MalleswariWeightliftingWorld Champion, later went on to win Bronze at Olympics (first ever medal by Indian Women)
61995–1996Nameirakpam KunjaraniWeightliftingWorld Champion
71996–1997Leander PaesTennisBronze Medal winner in 1996 Olympics, went on to win multiple Grand Slams in Doubles and Mixed
81997–1998Sachin TendulkarCricketMaster Blaster, went on to break all Runs record in Cricket
91998–1999Jyotirmoyee SikdarAthleticsMiddle distance runner winning 2 Gold at 1998 Asiad
101999–2000Dhanraj PillayHockeyFamous Forward Hockey player, leading Indian Men’s Hockey team to many victories
112000–2001Pullela GopichandBadmintonOnly 2nd Indian player to win All England Championship
122001Abhinav BindraShootingRifle Shooter, went on to win Gold Medal at 2008 Olympics
132002K. M. BeenamolAthleticsMedal winning runner in 2002 Asiad
142002Anjali BhagwatShootingRifle Shooter, World no. 1 in 10m Air Rifle Shooting in 2002
152003Anju Bobby GeorgeAthleticsBronze Medal winner in World Championship in Long Jump
162004Rajyavardhan Singh RathoreShootingDouble Trap shooter, Silver medal at 2004 Olympics
172005Pankaj AdvaniBilliards and SnookerMultiple times Billiards and Snooker World Championship winer
182006Manavjit Singh SandhuShootingTrap Shooter, Former no. 1 and World Championship winner
192007Mahendra Singh DhoniCricketT-20 World Cup win in 2007
202009Mary KomBoxingMost decorated female boxer, World Boxing Championships winner
212009Vijender SinghBoxingBronze medal at 2008 Olympics
222009Sushil KumarFreestyle wrestlingBronze medal at 2008 Olympics, add Silver in 2012 Olympics
232010Saina NehwalBadmintonWent on to win Bronze at 2012 Olympics
242011Gagan NarangShootingRifle Shooter, went on to win Bronze at 2012 Olympics
252012Vijay KumarShootingPistol Shooter, won Silver at 2012 Olympics
262012Yogeshwar DuttFreestyle wrestlingWon Bronze at 2012 Olympics
272013Ronjan SodhiShootingDouble Trap shooter, won medal ay international events
282015Sania MirzaTennisMultiple time Grand Slam Champion and Asiad medalist
292016P. V. SindhuBadmintonBronze medal in 2016 Olympics, went on to win Silver in 2020 Olympics
302016Dipa KarmakarGymnasticsFinished 4th in Vault event in 2016 Olympics
312016Jitu RaiShootingPistol Shooter, Silver medalist in World Championship
322016Sakshi MalikFreestyle wrestlingBronze medal in 2016 Olympics
332017Devendra JhajhariaParalympic javelinMultiple Paralympics medal winner
342017Sardara SinghHockeyHalf back, leaded India to many victories. Captained India at 22 years of age
352018Saikhom Mirabai ChanuWeightliftingWent on to win Silver at 2020 Olympics
362018Virat KohliCricketLeading Batter in World Cricket
372019Deepa MalikParalympic (shot put, javelin, others)Silver Medalist at 2016 Paralympics
382019Bajrang PuniaFreestyle wrestlingWent on to win Bronze at 2020 Olympics
392020Rohit SharmaCricketLeading Batter in World Cricket
402020Mariyappan ThangaveluParalympic high jumpGold at 2016 Olympics, added Silver at 2020 Olympics
412020Manika BatraTable tennisMultiple medal winners at international events’
422020Vinesh PhogatFreestyle wrestlingBronze medal winner at World Championship
432020Rani RampalHockeyIndian Women,s Hocket team captaion, went on to lead India to 4th finish in 2020 Olympics
442021Neeraj ChopraAthleticsGold at 2020 Olympics in Javelin
452021Ravi Kumar DahiyaFreestyle wrestlingSilver at 2020 Olympics
462021Lovlina BorgohainBoxingBronze at 2020 Olympics
472021P. R. SreejeshHockeyGoalkeeper for Bronze medal winning team at 2020 Olympics
482021Avani LekharaParalympic shootingRifle Shooter, Gold and Bronze medal winner at 2020 Paralympics
492021Sumit AntilPara-athleticsJavelin thrower, Gold medal at 2020 Paralympics
502021Pramod BhagatPara-badmintonGold medal at 2020 Paralympics
512021Krishna NagarPara-badmintonGold medal at 2020 Paralympics
522021Manish NarwalParalympic shootingPistol Shooter, Gold medal at 2020 Paralympics
532021Mithali RajCricketDecorated Women batter, captained India for long time
542021Sunil ChhetriFootballHighest international goals scorer for India. Under top-5 in World 
552021Manpreet SinghHockeyMidfielder, Captain of Bronze medal winning team at 2020 Olympics