Mon, 25 Sep 2023

New Delhi [India], June 9 (ANI): Union Minister Smriti Irani on Thursday delivered an inspirational message to the Special Olympics Bharat contingent at the National Send-Off ceremony and expressed hope that all the athletes will make India proud.

Special Olympics Bharat on Thursday organised a torch run and a national send-off ceremony at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, New Delhi, for the Indian contingent that will be travelling for the Special Olympics World Summer Games 2023 in Berlin, Germany which will take place between June 17 to 25.

India will be sending a contingent comprising 198 athletes and Unified partners and 57 Coaches to participate across 16 sports at the prestigious event, as per a press release from Special Olympics Bharat.

The ceremony was graced by Union Minister Anurag Thakur, Department of Youth Affairs and Sports and Department of Information and Broadcasting as the chief guest for the torch run, Union Minister Smriti Irani, Department of Women and Child Development and Department of Minority Affairs as the chief guest for the send-off ceremony, among other distinguished guests.

"Our contingent will represent our country in the Special Olympics going to be held in Berlin, where about 190 countries will participate. It is a matter of pride for us that the 102 athletes from India are women. I hope all our athletes will make our country proud," Union Minister Smriti Irani told ANI.

The event was divided into two parts -- 'The Flame of Hope' and 'The Send-Off Ceremony'. The Flame of Hope left New Delhi on May 26 and travelled across multiple cities. The torch returned to Haryana from where it was brought to the nation's capital, New Delhi, along with the Haryana athletes who will be travelling to Berlin along with Special Olympics Bharat. The Torch was received by the Guest of Honour, President, Indian Olympic Association, PT Usha and officials of Special Olympics Bharat. The Flame of Torch came to an end with a rousing speech from Hon'ble Union Minister Shri Anurag Thakur. (ANI)

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