April 2, 2019

Presenting... The Hoopistani Indian Basketball Hall of Fame

It's been around 90 years since basketball was rumoured to be first played on Indian soil. By 1934, India conducted their first national championship; got affiliation to FIBA by 1936; formed the Basketball Federation of India (BFI) soon after independence in 1950; and fielded an international team for the Asian Games in New Delhi in 1951. India has been a consistent participant in Asian basketball championships, Asian Games, and other international tournaments for the past 70 years and in 1980, the Men's basketball team even played in the Olympic Games in Russia!

It hasn't always been a successful history relative to other nations in Asia (and worldwide), but in the span of the past near-century, India has produced a number of dominant players, game-changing coaches, and other important officials and administrators that have left a mark. Often, they did so while swimming against the tide, succeeding in a sport that struggled with internal strife and external ignorance.

In their 2019 Annual General Meeting, the BFI announced that they will be launching a 'BFI Hall of Fame' to honour legends of the Indian basketball family. But given their history of delay, political biases, and other factors, it is unlikely their HOF will give the timely (already overdue) recognition to the greats of the game. Over the years, a few dozen Indian basketballers have been presented with the Arjuna Award and honoured in their home states. One, very recently, even won the Padma Shri. But there are still many more waiting to be celebrated and honoured.

To commemorate the greats of Indian basketball history, I have decided to start my own Indian Basketball Hall of Fame series. It's my small way of celebrating those who paved the way: a special mention on this blog. Every week, I will add a new player to the list below, with a link that will give a short description of their career highlights.

I want to thank all of those in the Indian basketball family on social media who helped me compile an incredible database of names to get started with. Please feel free to leave your thoughts and suggestions in the comments below.

Hoopistani Indian Basketball Hall of Fame Inductees


  1. Robinson, tj sahi, Radhey Shyam are my top 3 hall of fame

  2. Late Khushi Ram ji - Arjuna Awardee
    Ajmer Singh - Arjuna Awardee
    Ramkumar - Dhyan Chand Awardee
    Robinson - Asian All Star
    Hanuman Singh - Arjuna Awardee
    Abbas Montasir - Arjuna Awardee

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  4. Diniar Parvez Irani. Represented India at the Olympic games held at Moscow in 1980 and also Asian Basketball Championship held at Nagoya,Japan in 1979. He also served as a Coach for more than 30 years with Sports Authority of India. He is in the basketball hall of fame at JRD stadium in Jamshedpur. He has won the national title 5 times as well.

  5. Thank you all for sharing your comments! Please keep sending me your suggestions and advice as I add to this list.

  6. Tj sahi
    Are my top 3.
    For #HOF

  7. Surender khataria- around awardee

  8. CV Sunny, Robinson and ajmeer Singh are the actual hof..... How can you leave out these extra ordinary players

    1. Thanks for your comments. This is just the beginning of the list: many more players will be added as time passes.

  9. Thanks writing about my grandfather Maj sarbjit Singh. His hardwork and talent was never recognised. It gives me pleasure and honour to read about him.

  10. My grandfather late om prakash dhull passed on 26 January 2022 and i want to honour him with a biopic 🙏🏻