Athletics coach Ramakrishnan Gandhi, who passed away last year, was on Saturday recommended for the prestigious Dronacharya award along with Rio Paralympics gold-medallist T Mariyappan’s mentor Satyanarayana.
Gandhi had trained Gurmeet Singh, who last year became the first Indian to win a gold medal at the Asian Race Walking Championships in Naomi, Japan.
Baljinder Singh, who had won a bronze in the same 20km walk event in Naomi, also trained under Gandhi along with Deepmala Devi, the Manipuri race walker.Gandhi, part of Indian athletics as coach for over a decade, died last year at the age of 55. At the time of his passing away, his relationship with the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) was not at its best due to his omission from the Rio contingent.
Satyanarayana has coached para-athlete Mariyappan, who won gold medal in high jump in Rio.
Mariyappan was chosen for the Arjuna award few days back.
The third name recommended for the Dronacharya is Kabaddi coach Heeranand Kataria.
Names of Sakshi Malik’s coaches Kuldeep Malik and Mandip Singh were also discussed but the committee eventually dropped both since consensus could not be reached.
Dronacharya Awardees: Late Ramakrishnan Gandhi (Athletics), Heera Nand Kataria (Kabaddi) and Satya Narayan para athlete).
Dhyanchand awardees: Bhupender Singh (Athletics), Syed Shahid Hakim (Football) and Sumarai Tete (Hockey).