In an effort to spread the message of the importance of following Government directives in the fight against coronavirus, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday enlisted the services of India’s vast community of sportspersons.
In a video call with over 40 athletes that started at 11am and lasted well over an hour, the PM ‘praised the sportspersons for bringing glory to the nation through stellar performances on the field.’
Acording to the PIB release, the PM told all the sportspersons that they ‘now have a very important role to play in boosting the morale of the nation as well as spreading the message of social distancing along with asking people to continuously follow advisories given during lockdown. He underlined that the traits learnt in sports training viz the ability to face challenges, self-discipline, positivity and self-belief are the essential tools to combat the spread of the virus.’
Asking them to join the fight against the virus, the Prime Minister asked everyone to include five points in their message to the people:
- ‘Sankalp’ to fight the pandemic
- ‘Sanyam’ to follow social distancing
- ‘Sakaratmakta’ to maintain positivity
- ‘Samman’ to respect the frontline soldiers in this battle including the medical fraternity, the police personnel etc
- ‘Sahyog’ at personal level as well as at national level through contribution to PM-CARES fund.
He also asked them to highlight the importance of both physical and mental fitness and also popularize guidelines released by AYUSH Ministry.
All sporting activities are currently shut in the country and it is still not clear when normalcy will resume. The much-anticipated Indian Premier League is among the big-ticket Indian events suspended till April 15.
Apart from Tendulkar, Ganguly and Kohli, others in the call included top batsman Rohit Sharma, former pacer Zaheer Khan, Yuvraj Singh. The names of World Cup-winning former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and K L Rahul were in the list of participants but it is learnt that they could not attend the call.
Olympic silver-medallist shuttler Sindhu, javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, chess wizard Viswanathan Anand, sprinter Hima Das, boxing star Amit Panghal, wrestler Vinesh Phogat, and teenage shooting sensation Manu Bhaker were among the other accomplished athletes who took part in the video call.
(With inputs from PTI)
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