The Karnataka High Court on Wednesday stayed the World Number tennis star Sania Mirza’s Khel Ratna award after a Paralympian HN Girisha’s filed a plea challenging the decision. The court has issued notices to both the central government and Sania Mirza.
In his plea, Girisha had argued that he was more deserving for the award but the central government’s selection committee ignored him decided to award Sania instead. Girisha was earlier honoured with Padma Shri and Arjuna awards for his achievements.
(Also read: From skirts to patriotism, national pride Sania Mirza was almost never left alone)
Sania’s name was recommended by a Sports ministry constituted awards committee. This awards committee was headed by Justice V K Bali, the retired Chief Justice of the Kerala High Court.
The committee included eminent athletes such as Dola Banerjee, MM Somayya and Bhogeshwar Baruah and sports journalists apart from top officials of the sports ministry.
Sania won her career’s first ever women’s doubles Grand Slam title with Swiss partner Martina Hingis in June this year. She also became world number one before winning the Grass Court major.
Sania, who has won four Grand Slam titles in her career, was competing with the likes of squash player Dipika Pallikal and discus thrower Vikas Gowda for this prestigious award.