Harbhajan’s noble gesture persuades Minister to release funds for ailing athlete Bhattal

The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has released an aid of ₹ 10 lakh for the treatment of ailing athlete Hakam Bhattal, an Asian Games gold medallist and Major Dhyan Chand national sports award winner. Harbhajan Singh with his benevolent gesture had echoed the voice of the family in dire need of support.

Harbhajan Singh, a cricket icon and crusader for all good cause, has offered help to ailing athlete Hakam Bhattal much before the authorities could take the note of a tweet by news agency ANI. The Asian Games gold medallist and Major Dhyan Chand Award winner is hospitalised at Sangrur, in Punjab, with kidney and liver ailment. His wife had pleaded for the Government assistance for the treatment of an achiever who had brought laurels to the nation.

Harbhajan Singh, a brave heart who always walks the talk, had immediately responded to the tweet from London where he is a panellist on Sky Sports for the England-India cricket series broadcast, had come forward to support the fellow athlete. Harbhajan had immediately asked for the contact details of the Bhattal family so that he could silently extend the best possible help in his own way.

With Harbhajan stepping in, the tweet went viral. Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, himself a champion athlete, immediately took the note of the tweet that became viral after Harbhajan Singh had stepped in with an offer to extend help to the ailing athlete. The Minister acted promptly to ensure a grant of ₹ 10 lakh for treatment of Hakam Bhattal.

Bhattal’s wife had said the family has spent all their saving on his treatment. Since they were not able to bear the cost of treatment for the former Army havildar, the hospital had asked the family to take Bhattal home, with his kidney and liver ailments.

The 62-year-old Bhattal had won the 20 km walk gold at the 1978 Bangkok Asian Games. He was decorated with the Major Dhyan Chand Award in 2008 by then President Pratibha Patil.