From Neeraj Chopra to Harmanpreet Kaur - Asian Games 2023 heroes credit inspiring PM Modi for success (WATCH)
India secured 107 medals, including an impressive 28 gold medals, at the Asian Games 2023 making this a historic achievement in terms of total medal count in the continental multi-sport event.
In a momentous event, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the contingent of Indian athletes who participated in the Asian Games 2023. The interaction took place at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium in New Delhi on Tuesday, where he celebrated India's remarkable performance at the Games. India secured 107 medals, including an impressive 28 gold medals, making this a historic achievement in terms of total medal count in the continental multi-sport event.
Prime Minister Modi extended a warm welcome to the athletes on behalf of every Indian citizen and heartily congratulated them for their remarkable success. He also noted the significant historical connection to the venue, as it was in the same stadium that the inaugural edition of the Asian Games was held in 1951.
The Prime Minister acknowledged the remarkable courage and determination displayed by the athletes, highlighting how their accomplishments have ignited a spirit of celebration across the nation. He underlined the immense effort that went into achieving the target of 100+ medals and expressed that the entire nation was brimming with pride.
PM Modi also took a moment to recognize the pivotal role played by coaches, trainers, physios, and officials in supporting the athletes on their journey to success. He paid heartfelt tribute to the parents of the athletes, emphasizing the immense contributions and sacrifices made by their families, stating that the journey from the training ground to the podium would be impossible without their support.
Modi underscored the notable achievements in various sports, including shooting, archery, squash, rowing, female boxing, and the historic first gold medal in women's and men's cricket events and squash mixed doubles. He emphasized the significance of medals in several events that India hadn't won in decades, marking a long-awaited success due to the athletes' efforts.
The Prime Minister highlighted India's expanded presence and success across numerous sports, noting that at least 20 events where India had never podiumed were now receiving medals. He stated that the athletes had not just opened an account but had paved the way for inspiring future generations, extending beyond the Asian Games and contributing to India's journey towards the Olympics.
Modi expressed immense pride in the achievements of women athletes and emphasized their role in showcasing India's capabilities. He noted that more than half of the medals were secured by female athletes and credited the women's cricket team for initiating the string of successes. The Prime Minister applauded the women's athletics team for their exceptional performances and emphasized that the daughters of India were determined to be number one in track and field events, reflecting the spirit and power of the new India.
The Prime Minister also celebrated the presence of younger athletes among the medal winners, highlighting their role in shaping a sporting nation. He acknowledged the shift in mindset among India's youth, emphasizing that they no longer settle for just good performances but strive for medals and victories.
Modi referred to the athletes as the "Greatest of All Time" (GOAT) in the common lingo of younger generations. He urged athletes to connect with youth, sharing their passion, dedication, and life stories to inspire future generations. He emphasized that athletes had the power to influence and guide the younger generation away from the evils of drugs, underlining the ongoing battle against drug abuse in the nation.
Following this interaction, the Asian Games 2023 contingent credited PM Modi's inspirational support for their success in Hangzhou, China. From javelin superstar Neeraj Chopra to Indian women's cricket team star Harmanpreet Kaur, the athletes spoke about how PM Modi has been a source of inspiration for them, looking out for them like a parent and motivating them to do well.
Here's a look at what the athletes had to say after their Asian Games 2023 success: