Arjuna Award finally gives bodybuilder Bhaskaran recognition

S. Bhaskaran became the first bodybuilder to win an Arjuna Award since TV Pauly in 1999.

Arjuna awardee S. Bhaskaran during a felicitation ceremony in Chennai.   -  R. Ravindran

In the last 10 days, an Arjuna Award has managed to draw attention towards bodybuilder S. Bhaskaran’s way which he wasn’t able to garner after his gold medal in the World Championships last year.

“I won Asia championships and World’s (in Thailand) in 2018 but I didn’t get any recognition. It was disappointing but I hope the future generation of bodybuilders get the right acknowledgment,” Bhaskaran said, on his return to Chennai after being conferred with the prestigious award earlier this week.

He was felicitated here on Saturday by the Indian Body Builder Federation (IBBF) after the Tamil Nadu man became the first bodybuilder to win an Arjuna Award since TV Pauly in 1999.

The 41-year-old had shelved his ambitions of competing to focus on his young family for many years until his wife, Bhuvaneshwari, and two children urged him to return to competitive bodybuilding in 2015.

“My mother (Radhabhai) and my family have helped me achieve my dreams. IBBF sponsored me to compete in World Championships because of my 20-year dedication,” Bhaskaran said.