Lt. Col. Hari Pal Kaushik was a multitalented individual, primarily known for his contribution to sports and dedication to his country. Born in India, he wanted to spend his life serving the country, which inspired him to join the Indian Army. His passion for hockey, however, propelled him to fame in India and everywhere else.
Lt. Col. Kaushik was a prolific athlete in his early days, represented his school and college in a variety of sports. He excelled in track and field events, and his prowess on the running track earned him numerous accolades.
Hockey got him gold
In the Summer Olympics of 1956 and 1964, he won gold medals. He was the assistant captain for the victorious team in the 1966 Asian Games and later worked as a field hockey administrator and TV commentator. In 1998, Lt. Col. Kaushik was awarded the Arjuna Award for his outstanding athletic achievements.
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In 1977, he joined the Indian Army as a commissioned officer. His athletic ability drew the attention of his superiors. The army recognised his potential and encouraged him to continue pursuing sports. Soon, Lt. Col. Kaushik began representing the army in various sporting events, and his impressive performances earned him a place on the Indian national team. He represented India in numerous international competitions, including the 1982 Asian Games, where he won a bronze medal in the 400-meter relay.
Kaushik’s love for hockey started at a young age, and he was a natural athlete with exceptional skills. His passion for the sport led him to become a coach, where he trained and mentored numerous young players. In 2002, he was named head coach of the Indian women’s hockey team, for his dedication to the sport.
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Soldier, player, and coach
The Indian women’s hockey team made significant strides under Kaushik’s leadership, winning the gold medal at the 2004 Asia Cup and finishing fourth at the 2006 Commonwealth Games. Unfortunately, Kaushik passed away in 2018 at the age of 72.
His contributions to the hockey and military communities in India have left an indelible imprint, and his legacy will continue to inspire future generations of athletes and servicemen and women. He will always be remembered as a true champion of sports and service.
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