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India aims for Olympic in 2036 says Anurag Thakur: Ambitious plans unveiled

Anurag Thakur, India's prominent sports figure, reveals the nation's strong desire to host the 2036 Olympics, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi leading the charge.

cricket India aims for Olympic in 2036 says Anurag Thakur: Ambitious plans unveiled osf
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First Published Feb 25, 2024, 8:50 PM IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has already conveyed the nation's aspiration to host the 2036 Olympics, as disclosed during the IOC session in Mumbai last year. When questioned about India's readiness to host such a monumental event and the potential host city, Anurag Thakur stated, "PM Modi made it very clear during the IOC session that India is very serious about hosting the 2036 Summer Olympics, and before that, we aim to host the 2030 Youth Olympics. And, I have a reason to say so."

Thakur substantiated his optimism by highlighting India's impressive economic growth in the last decade, becoming the world's fifth-largest economy. He projected India's economy to further ascend, positioning it as the third-largest within the next five years. Emphasizing the burgeoning sports infrastructure, Thakur underscored the country's demographic advantage with a population of 1.4 billion, 65 percent of which is below 35 years. He envisioned India as a substantial market for the Olympics.

Setting ambitious targets, Thakur articulated, "By 2036, the Indian economy would be much larger, sports infrastructure is also getting better, and our goal is for India to be among the top-10 medal-winning countries. By 2047, our aim is to be among the top-5 in medal standings."

Drawing parallels with cricket's evolution in India, Thakur foresees Olympic disciplines garnering widespread popularity. He likened the current state of Olympic sports to cricket's pre-1983 World Cup era and the subsequent transformative period after winning the tournament.

Highlighting the government's commitment to sports infrastructure, Thakur expressed confidence, stating, "The sports budget has tripled in the last decade, with INR 3,000 crores invested in creating 300 sports facilities. The focus has been on providing schemes for athletes' welfare, eliminating concerns about training and funding. The increased sports budget, initiatives like Khelo India, and the Target Olympics Podium Scheme (TOPS) have contributed to India's success in events like the Hangzhou Asian Games, where we won 107 medals."

He applauded the government's support through programs like Khelo India and TOPS, providing elite athletes with amenities such as pocket money, boarding, lodging, and training facilities. Thakur also urged state governments to actively contribute to the development of sports in the country.

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