After the onslaught from the politicians in India, renaming everything in sight to gain political mileage, it’s the turn of our past rulers, the Britain to follow(for once, other countries are following us)
All the 361 London tube stations have been renamed after the past and present great sportspersons of the olympic games. A rare and bold feat, ahead of the opening of the 30th games on 27th July this year. Legends like Muhammad Ali, Michael Phelps, Carl Lewis, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Nadia Comaneci figure in this list.
The point of interest for us Indians is the inclusion of 3 great players of Indian hockey, Dhyan Chand, Roop Chand and Leslie Walter Claudius. Dhyan Chand, Hockey ka Jyadugar( the wizard of hockey), is a well known name in Indian households. Anecdotes about how he was asked to change the hockey stick during a game, fearing that it had some kind of magnetic power in it, are well known. We even had a lesson in our hindi text, entirely dedicated to him. I remember the name Roop Chand referred in some context, I think in one of the Kaun Banega Crorepati episode. But I am not sure. I definitely did not hear about Leslie Walter Claudius. After reading about his exploits in the Olympic games, I was surprised that I read the name for the first time. Or maybe it’s me who is ignorant. And the worst of all, I didn’t know the details about their exploits. Nor did I try to find out, with wikipedia being at hand. Such is the pitiful state of the knowledge of our national game among the current generation. I hate cricket, for being a bat-centric game. I always feel that hockey is being neglected by the current generation. I myself do not take much interest in watching the game. Hockey has been neglected. I believe, or have been led to believe that the team is being mis-managed.
It is heartening to find out that the people who were left mesmerized by the great Indian sportsmen, have not forgotten them. The gesture of renaming the stations is really sporting and I hope that the inclusion of Indian names will rekindle the flame for Hockey amongst the youth of India.
Read Details : The Times of India