Ahmedabad, Sep 30 (Representative) Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared the 36th National Games open here at Narendra Modi Stadium on Thursday. During the event, PM also inaugurated the world-class Swarnim Gujarat Sports University in Desar. Chief Minister of Gujarat, Bhupendra Patel, Governor of Gujarat, Acharya Devvrat, Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, Anurag Singh Thakur, Member of Parliament, C R Patil, Home Minister of Gujarat, Harsh Sanghavi and Mayor of Ahmedabad, Kirit Parmar were also present on the occasion.Addressing the gathering, PM Modi exclaimed that the exhilarating atmosphere at the inauguration of the National Games is beyond words. He remarked that the feeling and energy of such a grand event are beyond words.More than 7000 athletes, more than 15000 participants, more than 35000 colleges, universities and schools and the direct connection of more than 50 lakh students with the National Games is amazing and unprecedented, he exclaimed. “At the world’s largest stadium, such a young country in the world, and the biggest sports festival in the country! When the event is so wonderful and unique, its energy ought to be so extraordinary”, PM said.
He recited the key words of the National Games Anthem ‘Judega India – Jeetega India’ to the rousing accompaniment of everyone present in the stadium. He said that the confidence shining on the face of athletes is a precursor of the coming golden age of Indian sports. PM also praised the capability of the people of Gujarat for organizing such a grand event at such short notice.Remarking on the official mascot for the National Games 2022 is Savaj, the Asiatic lion, Modi said that the mascot reflects the mood of India’s youth, a passion for fearless entry into the sporting arena. This is also a symbol of rising India in a global scenario. Speaking about the uniqueness of the stadium, PM said that while other complexes are limited to only a few sports facilities, Sardar Patel Sports Complex has facilities for many sports like Football, Hockey, Basketball, Kabaddi, Boxing and Lawn Tennis.”In a way, it is a model for the whole country. When infrastructure is of this standard, the morale of the athletes also soars”, he added. Urging the players who are participating in the National Games to enjoy the Navratri event in the state, PM said that festivities go beyond the worship of Maa Durga and the joyous celebrations of Garba take place as well. “It has its own identity”, he added.PM reiterated the importance of sports in national life.
“The victory of the players in the field of play, their strong performance, also paves the way for the victory of the country in other fields. The soft power of sports enhances the country’s identity and image manifold. “Highlighting the progress made in the field of sports, the PM said: “8 years ago the players of India used to go to play 20-25 games. Now players from India go to participate in about 40 different sports. The number of medals, as well as India’s aura, are increasing today.” PM Modi said that the sports budget of the country has increased by almost 70 per cent in the last 8 years. This has led to more and more resources being made available to the players which help in creating more and more opportunities for the players. He spoke directly to the players and shared a mantra with them. He said, “If you want to win the competition, then you have to learn to live commitment and continuity. “Speaking of the sports spirit, Modi pointed out that defeat and victory in sports should never be considered the final outcome. He added that the dreams of a young country like India can be realised if the sports spirit becomes a part of your life. “You have to remember, where there is movement, there is progress,” he said.