Pune, January 10: The Khelo India Youth Games 2019 were declared open in Pune on Wednesday (January 9) in the presence of a host of sports personalities including double Olympic medallist wrestler Sushil Kumar.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore received the virtual torch before Rathore joined athletes in taking the pledge as the Games were declared open at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, a media release issued here said.
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi's message was read out and displayed on the occasion.
Thrilled to have launched #KheloIndia 2019 in Pune.— Rajyavardhan Rathore (@Ra_THORe) January 9, 2019
Heartfelt thanks to @Dev_Fadnavis Ji & @TawdeVinod Ji for the splendid effort
PM @narendramodi Ji's vision continually drives @KheloIndia
Wishing India's young champs all the best for the next ten days of #KheloIndia! pic.twitter.com/TkEODgM7Bz
Several sportspersons including Sushil Kumar, Olympian hockey winners Gurbux Singh and Ajit Pal Singh, badminton legend P Gopichand, shooter Gagan Narang, gymnasts Dipa Karmakar and legendary woman footballer Bem Bem Devi were also present at the event.
The ceremony officially kicked off the 12-day extravaganza for over 6,000 Under-17 and Under-21 athletes. Eighteen disciplines wil be contested during the games including athletics, badminton, boxing, hockey and football.