PANAJI: Sports Minister Govind Gaude on Monday said that the successful hosting of the 37th National Games in the state will only open doors for many more sporting infrastructure and events in the coastal state.
Gaude had recently travelled to New Delhi to watch Track cycling and golf events which are part of the Games.
“These two disciplines were held in New Delhi. Cycling event was held at the Indira Gandhi Velodrome from November 2 and was inaugurated by Hon. Minister of State for Tourism and Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shripad Naik while I inaugurated the Golf discipline on November 5.
“Both these events had to be held outside the state as we didn’t have the necessary infrastructure. For the future, we will think about this. There is a lot of enthusiasm and motivation among people to take part in the Games. The National Games is just a beginning for the state, and a lot of things are yet to come for Goa as far as the sporting arena is concerned,” he said. The Minister said that 3 demo sports were held as part of the National Games – Mini Golf, Lagori and Gatka. “The medals of these sports are not counted in the final tally and no certification is being given to the participants. But when the next National Games will be held, these disciplines will be included. However, we will give the prize money for these three sports,” he said.
Gaude also said that the state-of-art equipment that has been procured by the state government for the Games must be utilised properly and that there will be an inventory of the equipment.
He also said that as per the previous announcement by the Chief Minister, a reserved quota for government jobs will be set aside for athletes who have won medals at the national level. “The government will decide on this,” he said.
Gaude said that the closing ceremony will be held on November 9 at Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Stadium, which will be attended by Vice-President of India Jagdeep Dhankhar. “I feel very proud that 10,147 athletes participated in the Games up till now.
But there are some athletes who have participated in more than one discipline. If you take the overall participation discipline-wise count then it is more than 11,100 athletes. I invite everyone for the closing ceremony on 9 November. Along with the Vice-President, Goa Governor P S Pillai, Chief Minister Dr. Pramod Sawant and other dignitaries will be present,” he said. Against the backdrop of ‘Get, Set, Goa’, Gaude thanked all the athletes, officials of the national and state sports federations, and all governments in the country for their whole-hearted support. “I thank the technical officials and VVIPS who have praised the organisation of the Games in Goa. I also thank Hon. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur for their support,” he said.