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Muslim “Dhyan Chand”

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Martyr Badruddin Khanhailed from a place called Hatha of Gorasara village in Ghazipur district of UP. Whenever Khan manouvered the ball with his hockey stick racing towards the goal post, spectators present in the stadium simply had one statement on their lips: “a goal is certain”.
The story goes back to the golden period of Indian hockey (1928,1932 and 1936) when Lal Shah Bukhari, Jaypal Singh and Major Dhyan Chand secured Gold Medal for India in the Olympics. Owing to his superb performance, Major Dhyan Chand got Padma Vibhushan in 1956. Thats how we got our National Hockey Day on his birthday which is celebrated on the 29th of August every year. Players of that era had left their mark on today’s players. Many talented players of the likes of Lal Shah Bukhari, Jaypal Singh and Major Dhyan Chand were rising in the country. Among them was a very popular: Badruddin Khan.
Though he did not possess any magic in his hockey stick but certainly had artistic skills in his hands. Within a short time he became a hockey sensation. During those times a zonal hockey tournament match was scheduled at Muslim Rajput Inter College, Dildarnagar, which is now called SKBM Degree College. In that historic match, Badruddin Khan’s Gandhi Memorial Inter College, Dildarnagar, faced off the Hindu Inter College, Zamania in the finals.
When the match started, Badruddin Khan made a lightning strike and secured a goal. But as he was returning towards his goal post, players of the opposite team surrounded him and struck a blow to his head with the hockey stick from behind -- a shameful incident in the history of Indian sports. Badruddin lost his consciousness and collapsed on the ground. He was taken to Edwards King Hospital, Kabir Choura, Varanasi. He succumbed to his injury and breathed his last on 23 January, 1955. After his demise his last remains were brought to the same college grounds where he was martyred where people paid homage to him. He was buried in his village. It is believed that Badruddin is the only player of hockey who attained martyrdom while playing the game. (Shahab Khan Gorasara)

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-30 September 2016 on page no. 12

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