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Olympians strike a chord with youth at Kolkata marathon

July 1, 2012 - Kolkata

A large number of Olympians participated in the Kolkata city leg of Olympic Day Run (ODR) over the weekend, with a motive to inspire the youth to come forward and venture into such territories.

Former hockey player Gurbux Singh said that such events serve as a great platform and inspire the youth to win laurels for the state.

"I feel great and I think this is well done, this has inspired Bengal people that laurels should be brought and I hope India wins a lot of medals," said Singh.

The Kolkata leg saw Olympians like Gurbux Singh, Paltu Roy, Soma Biswas and Dola Banerjee, among others, in the prestigious run, which commenced at Rabindra Sarobar and culminated at Kshudiram Anushilan Kendra.

A member of the men's archery team, Rahul Banerjee, said that their main goal was to qualify for the Olympics, adding that if the participants continue to perform in this manner, then they would surely add to the pride of the nation.

"First of all, our hurdles were to qualify for Olympics, it was tough. There were 36 countries and only three could qualify. Hopefully, we will do well because we can continue our performance like this," he said.

The 10-km run was flagged off by West Bengal Sports Minister Madan Mitra, while Governor M K Narayanan presided over the closing ceremony.

The sacred Olympic flame was first lit in Athens on June 23, 1984, and since then, the run is held every year in all the major cities of the world.


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