Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju is hoping India would be able to organise sporting events in a phased manner by September-October, saying it will help in boosting the confidence of people amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The Sports Ministry had resumed training camps of some Olympics disciplines in the last week of May and Rijiju said events will also gradually start in the near future.
“The government has allowed some sporting activities with certain restrictions while following a stringent SOP, the guidelines that must be followed by every sporting organisation,” Rijiju said while addressing a ministerial forum of Commonwealth countries on Thursday.
“I am happy to inform that the training of our elite, Olympic-bound athletes has begun in specialised camps, recently.”
During his address, Rijiju shared India’s road to the resumption of sports activities for the post-COVID-19 era.
“I have also spoken to the sports ministers of all states and union territories, as well as the National Sports Federations and asked them to slowly resume some sporting events.
“We need to boost the confidence of people. I am hopeful India will have sporting events from September or October, even the big leagues in various sports are considering resumption.”
The minister also enlightened the Commonwealth leaders about India’s efforts in successfully running online training programmes for athletes and skill upgradation courses for coaches.
“We have seen participation from thousands of athletes of various levels and coaches who have been hugely benefitted by these knowledge enhancement programmes,” he said.
Speaking at the global forum, which saw participation from all Commonwealth countries, Rijiju added, “As members of Commonwealth nations we need to stand in solidarity on all issues, especially at a time like this. Most of the points raised here by Ministers from other countries are similar to that of India’s.”
Highlighting the importance of staying fit during the pandemic, the sports minister said, “I would like to inform all ministers on this forum that a very important programme, the Fit India Movement, was launched by our Honourable Prime Minister last year, and it has been very useful in fighting the pandemic since building fitness and immunity is crucial during these COVID times.
“India has successfully created awareness about the importance of staying fit through a series of dedicated online programmes for citizens on fitness and well-being all through the pandemic.”