Indian Sports revitalised, on path to glory


“Kaun Bola Mujhse Na Ho Paayega?
Apna Time Aayega”
Who says I can’t to do that,
My time will come”

The well-known lyrics from the Hindi film, Gully Boys, finest encapsulates the temper within the Indian sports activities at this time. For far too lengthy after the Independence, the Indian sports activities story had a hackneyed and crushed observe. In multi-sporting world occasion after the opposite, once we used to see the athletes from the main sports activities nation excelling, we used to usually wonder- Kya apna time bhee kabhi aayega? (Will our time ever come?). The complete narrative of India within the Olympics was woven across the golden age of the Indian hockey after which two ‘near and yet so far moments’ in athletics. The first such second was the 1960 Rome Olympics, when the flying Sikh Milkha Singh missed the rostrum by a whisker. The second such second was PT Usha in 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, when she missed the medal by a fraction of seconds. In truth, by the top of the century, the bigger query was—why the second most populous nation on the globe returns empty handed from the Olympics?

A Renewed Vigour, New Stories of Glory

The ruling dispensation both royally ignored the query or answered them as per their comfort. More importantly, we had comparable strategy to the essential questions within the area of economics, politics, protection, nationwide integration amongst others. India after 2014, within the post- Narendra Modi, period has acquired the popularity of taking on many of those troublesome questions head-on. The realm of sports activities isn’t any completely different. While India nonetheless has miles to go, earlier than it turns into a world sports activities energy, one can confidently say now- Apna Time Aayega ( Our time will certainly come). The early indicators are seen.

In the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, the nation got here out with the very best ever efficiency when it comes to the variety of medals gained. Though the good Milkha Singh left this lovely planet only a 12 months earlier than the Olympics, ultimately Neeraj Chopra grew to become the primary Indian to get a gold medal for the nation in athletics. India’s last medal tally learn:-‘1 gold, 2 Silver and 4 bronze medals’. In the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, the Indian contingent gained 19 medals. This included, 5 gold, eight silver and 6 bronze medals. India began taking part within the Paralympics Games from 1968 onwards. In its journey from 1968 video games to 2016 video games, India had the whole of 12 medals solely.

Student take part within the ‘Shakti’ torch relay of the third Khelo India University Games, in Prayagraj

India is amongst the choose few nations which has participated in all of the editions of the Asian Games. In the primary Asian Games in 1951 in Delhi, India was ranked second. After this, whereas the opposite nations leaped forward, India began getting off the observe. In the 1990 Beijing Asian Games, India couldn’t end amongst the highest 10 nations within the continent for the primary time. But, 2018 Jakarta Asian Games was the clear indicator that lastly we’re on the observe. India ranked eighth within the video games, however what was extra heartening was the truth that the nation gained 70 medals in totality. 16 of those medals had been gold and that is nation’s highest medal yield within the historical past of the sport.

India made its debut within the World University Games in 1959. From there until the final World University Games, India had a complete of 18 medals in its identify. However, within the 2023 World University Games alone, India grabbed 26 medals. This included, 11 gold, 5 silver and 10 bronze medals. More than the silver lining, that is the clear indicator of the occasions to come. In this eight 12 months timeline, The Indian Premier League has consolidated its place because the marquee world sports activities property. The inaugural version of the Women’s Premier League made an impactful debut. And, within the type of Premier Kabaddi League, India has one other world class sports activities property. So, what has modified in India since 2014, the publish Narendra Modi period? And, how the nation has lastly managed to discover a solution to probably the most troublesome query which went unanswered for years within the Indian sports activities?

Empowering Through Sports

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Government took their guard attacking on the roots of the poverty. As their innings on the crease moved forward, group Modi began elevating the bar constantly when it comes to final mile supply and connectivity. This firmed up a robust bond between the folks and the chief and it allowed the chief to strategy the sports activities and its administration with the sense of possession. This caused a seminal change within the Indian sporting eco-system. In truth, Prime Minister and his group have superbly used the smooth energy of sports activities because the device for the sturdy social messaging.

Sports was supposed to be the posh and ruling dispensation ought to preserve it at their arms size. The celebration of victory in sports activities was supposed to be nationalistic and so be prevented

Prime Minister Narendra Modi steadily engages with the athletes, each abled and in another way abled, earlier than, throughout and after the most important sporting occasions. ‘Our fellow players in the games village used to wonder that the Prime Minister of the country is personally calling and talking to the athletes after the competitions. On one hand, he congratulates the winning athletes and on the other hand, he consoles the losing ones and inspires them not to give up the hope’- says a Paralympics medal winner within the Tokyo Paralympics 2020. ‘This consistent interaction and personal rapport with the different athletes also keeps the bureaucracy and the sporting ecosystem on the toes’- says Mahavir Rawat, the sports activities journalist. ‘Earlier the support system around the athletes used to be the VVIPs, now the players themselves are the real VVIPs and the rest are in the supporting cast’. Gradually, this message has began rubbing on within the sports activities federations as properly.

A New Ecosystem

Within this broader paradigm shift within the ecosystem, there are salient options which are actually the most important highlights of Narendra Modi authorities. Firstly, the bottom of the expertise pool is broadening continuously and constantly. Earlier, National Games used to occur after an enormous hole. Now, the Khelo India Games are being organised straight by the Sports Federation of India in shut co-ordination with the host state. This has ensured that the athletes get to compete and take part commonly. After the pressured ban due to Covid 19, the lately organized Khelo India Youth Games and Khelo India University Games have seen document participation. In addition, these video games are lined stay via multi digicam manufacturing unit and broadcast stay by public broadcaster DD Sports and different main non-public channels and OTT platforms of the nation like Star Sports, Sony and Jio cinema. All these have helped in amplifying the attain of those video games.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Olympic medalists throughout an interplay with Tokyo 2020 Olympics contingent in New Delhi

Secondly, the sooner leftist dominated narrative shied away from proudly owning the advantages of the ageless Indian civilization’s particular attributes like Yoga and the indigenous video games. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his authorities have introduced each Yoga and indigenous video games within the mainstream of the general public discourse. This has gone a good distance in selling the tradition of health and sports activities within the nation. Thirdly, the recognized expertise pool via the schemes like TOPS (Top of the Podium Scheme) are nurtured via better of the coaching, participation and publicity. In addition to the TOPs senior, TOPs junior is being put into the place. Thirdly, the sports activities progress story has been the inclusive, reflecting the true spirit of our nice nation. So, Paralympics and Olympic athletes are for the primary time being handled equally and the federal government is planning to embody the Para Sports within the Khelo India Games quickly.

As the Union Minister, Kiran Rijiju mentioned within the parliament, ‘once we meet the sportspersons of the sooner technology, they are saying that sportspersons of the present technology are fortunate to characterize the nation within the Prime Minister Narendra Modi period.” The Delhi Commonwealth Games 2010 eroded the self-worth of the nation. It was largely believed that India won’t be able to maintain one other sporting occasion of comparable nature within the foreseeable future. But, because the nation is now working on the street map for the following 25 years, main up to the 100 years of independence, the nation is now getting the arrogance again to host the Olympics.

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