Anurag Thakur chairs high-level meeting to review India’s Olympic preparation

Sports Minister Anurag Thakur on Monday chaired the first review meeting after taking charge of his ministry.

Anurag Thakur, who has been appointed as the new minister for sports, presided over the first review meeting of India’s preparation for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics since he assumed responsibility for the department on Monday.

Among those attending the meeting of the high-level committee were Thakur’s deputy Nisith Pramanik, and representatives of the sports ministry, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA), and the Sports Authority of India (SAI). Thakur and Pramanik attended their first meeting since taking over the sports ministry last week, even though it was the seventh meeting of the committee.

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As a result of a cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Thakur was appointed sports minister last week, replacing Kiren Rijiju. Pramanik, 35, is a first-time Member of Parliament from Bengal and Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports under Thakur, who is a cabinet minister.

Thakur chaired the meeting in which many topics were discussed, including the need for world-class training facilities for athletes heading for the Olympics.

“It was a normal review meeting of the high-level committee which has been going on for long. In these meetings, we take stock of Indian athletes’ preparation for the Olympics, to see if everything was on track or anything is pending which needs to be addressed,” an official source told PTI.

During an interaction with the officers, Thakur also discussed the progress of the #Cheer4India campaign and the preparations for the Prime Minister’s interactions with Olympic-bound athletes. As part of his effort to motivate them ahead of the Tokyo Olympics, Modi will interact virtually with the athletes. The live telecast will be available online as well as on Doordarshan and other government social media platforms.

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to strict health safety protocols with the participation of more than 120 Indian athletes at the Tokyo Games. No spectators will be allowed at the Games, which will be held from July 23 to August 8.