The Sports Authority of India’s Northern Regional Centre in Sonepat organized an online interaction with 391 participants of the Fit India Freedom Run. The event saw athletes and coaches’ participation from Sports Authority of India Sonepat and its centers across Haryana. Lalita Sharma, Regional Director, Sports Authority of India’s Northern Regional Centre, Sonepat, inaugurated the event. Representatives from the media also attended the event.
Star wrestlers and Khel Ratna Award winners in 2019 and 2020, respectively — Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat were among the speakers at the event that lasted for one and a half-hours.
Bajrang Punia spoke on the significance of fitness in helping build a prosperous nation, “If you look at any thriving country, it has a high number of fit people. I would encourage you to ask your family members and people in your society to remain fit. If you can keep fit, then you can keep yourself away from sickness. As an athlete, if we remain fit and eat properly, we can look up to achieve our goals, including the ultimate goal of grabbing an Olympic medal.”
Vinesh Phogat complimented the prime minister and the Sports Minister’s initiative and spoke of the responsibility sportspersons have toward society. “The Fit India Freedom Run is an excellent initiative taken by the Sports Minister. As a sportsperson, I gain a lot by remaining fit but would be encouraged if everyone around us remains fit. During the coronavirus pandemic, those who were fit were able to recover better from the disease.”
Amit Saroha, an Arjuna awardee and gold medalist at the 2014 Asian Para Games, Akhil Kumar, Arjuna awardee boxer, and women’s hockey player and Arjuna Awardee Deepika Thakur also had a word at the event. Other speakers were mountaineer Anita Kundu — a Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Award winner, Manpreet Singh — Kabaddi coach, and a Dhyan Chand awardee, Om Prakash Dahiya — Wrestling coach and a Dronacharya Awardee and Poonam Beniwal — High-Performance Manager, Sports Authority of India.