Guwahati: India's top sprinter Hima Das who hails from Dhing in rural Assam, has been nominated for the prestigious Khel Ratna award by the Assam State Government. The 20-year old is one of the youngest nominees at this year's awards.
Assam sports secretary Dulal Chandra Das sent a letter recommending Hima to the sports ministry on June 5.
Hima, it may be recalled, had a stellar 2018 and became the country's first track athlete to win a global title at U20 World Championship. Hima capped off her stand out 2018 season and won the 400m silver, 4X400 mixed relay gold (upgraded) an'd women's 4X400m gold at the Jakarta Asian Games.
Hima Das holds the current Indian national record in 400 metres with a timing of 50.79 s that she clocked at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The star sprinter will compete with ace javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, wrestler Vinesh Phogat, table tennis player Manika Batra, women's hockey captain Rani Rampal and cricketer Rohit Sharma for country's highest sporting honor.
After a brief lull, Hima returned with a bang in 2019, and won a number of golds in smaller events, mostly in Europe. Although the sprinter was selected to compete at the Doha World Championship, she was ruled out with a back injury.
It is pertinent to mention here that Hima is already a recipient of the Arjuna Award, which she received in 2018.