NE States has tremendous potential for development of sports & sportspersons: Murmu

Tura (Meghalaya), Jan 15 (UNI) President of Droupadi Murmu on Monday said that the North Eastern States has a tremendous potential for development of sports and sportspersons since the region traditionally has a strong sports culture.

Speaking after inaugurating the 5th Meghalaya Games at P.A.Sangma Sports Complex at Tura, Murmu said the region has a large tribal population who are good at many sports – Archery being one of them.

“There is an urgent need to support the talent from the tribal areas and groom them to become professional sportspersons,” the President said.

“Diversity is the beauty of our nation and we should utilise it to further boost India’s global image in sports arena,” she added.

Murmu, the first tribal politician to occupy the top constitutional post in India, said she was the elated that the society of North East encourages women to play and join sports as a profession.

Acknowledging that North East region has produced many great sportspersons who have contributed to India’s tally in prestigious international tournaments like Olympics and Commonwealth Games, the President also underlined the potential of adventure sports and adventure tourism in this region and the need to explore and leverage it on priority.

Appreciating the Meghalaya government and the organisers for hosting the Meghalaya Games, Murmu said these Games would ensure wider reach of such events among masses and would boost the development of sports infrastructure.

Over 3000 athletes from across Meghalaya are competing in the Games which will conclude on January 20.

Stating that India’s sporting culture has developed immensely in recent years, the President said Indian sportspersons are now winning more medals than ever in global events. Indian contingent delivered spectacular performances in recently held World University Games and AsianGames.

She said programmes such as Khelo India are helping in identifying and nurturing future sports champions.

“Our athletes are so determined and committed that they are making a mark in Para games too. Our men and women sportspersons are keeping the Indian flag flying high,” she said.

Earlier in the inaugural programme, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma called the day historic.

He said the event “is not just a sports event but this is the future of our young generation and our youth and, therefore, this is not a simple event for us but it is a very meaningful and a very important event in the history of our state.”

Highlighting his government’s focus, he said, “As a state government, we have been very, very clear in our vision and in our approach to ensure that we value the greatest asset and the resource that we have, which is the youth of our state and the youth of our nation.

We believe in investing in our youth, in ensuring that we channelize their energy in the right direction. We believe in giving the right opportunity to our youth. We believe that these programs, these games that we have, the different festivals that we have, these are important investments in our youth and the returns of this will be there for generations to come,” the Chief Minister said and acknowledged President Murmu’s presence has made this particular event even more meaningful.

Sangma emphasised that the event is a celebration of the state’s youth, celebration of its culture and a symbol of the unity of the state.

Earlier, while welcoming the President, CM’s wife Mehtab Sangma presented her the welcome gifts that included games’ souvenir, dakmanda, Ryndia, handmade Mulberry Silk Saree made by artisans of Garo hills.

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