Guwahati: Sprint queen Hima Das turned 20 on Thursday, and the day has come bearing gifts for her as the state government named Das as the torchbearer for the third Khelo India Youth Games to be held in Guwahati from January 10-22, calling for dual celebration.
The opening ceremony of Khelo Games will be graced by Union sports minister Kiren Rijiju and Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal. The games, formerly known as Khelo India School Games, aims to revive the culture of Indian sports from the grassroots level.
The 20-year-old Assamese athlete was the first Indian sprinter to win a gold medal at an international track event, and to be named as the torchbearer in her home state and that too on her birthday has turned out to be a pleasant surprise.
Union minister Kiren Rijiju wishing the sprinter on Twitter said: “On your birthday, I pray for more success to you in bringing laurels for India. Tomorrow, as you carry the Torch of Khelo India Youth Games 2020, Guwahati, my best wishes to all the players!”
The 3rd edition of Khelo India Youth Games will be held in Guwahati amidst the presence of 10,000 participants from different states. This year two additional games: Cycling and Lawn Bowls have been included. For the past two years Haryana, Maharashtra, Delhi remained the top three states with most of the medals.
The opening ceremony is going to experience a flashy evening along with the innovatory usage of lights and special performances to enhance the natural and cultural riches of Assam. Also for the first time, several flights have been arranged to carry athletes from Kolkata and Delhi to Guwahati. Electric cars will also be seen at the venues as a part of the go-green programme.