Imphal: Manipur Governor Najma Heptulla today urged three women athletes of the state, who won gold at the recently concluded Commonwealth Games (CWG) in Australia, to train youths here and pave way for more laurels into the country.
President Ram Nath Kovind, during his visit to Imphal last year, had rightly said that the state is the sports capital of the country, Heptulla asserted after felicitating the athletes at Raj Bhavan here.
“It is unfortunate that people do not realise the potential of the people here unless they win gold and silver for the country,” she said.
India finished third at the Commonwealth Games 2018 with 26 gold medals. Of that, boxer Mary Kom and weightlifters Mirabai Chanu and Khumukcham Sanjita Chanu bagged three.
Affectionately addressing the three gold medallists as “my girls”, the governor said a healthy diet regime is necessary for sportspersons to stay fit and develop stamina.
Not just weightlifters and boxers, youths interested in other sports disciplines like badminton, archery and football should also work hard to prove their merit on the international arena, she said.
Prior to the Games at Gold Coast in Australia, the Manipur government had announced a cash reward of Rs 15 lakh for the gold medallists from the state
Sports minister Letpao Haokip, who was also present at the programme, said the award would be given to them after completion of official formalities.
Mary Kom, on her part, said the state has to provide proper infrastructure and financial assistance to produce sportspersons of “international calibre”.
Mirabai Chanu, who won India’s first gold medal at CWG, promised to put up a good show at the upcoming events.
“I will practice hard to maintain my form at the Asian Games and 2020 Olympics,” she said.
Echoing similar sentiments, Khumukcham Sanjita Chanu, who won the yellow metal in the women’s 53 kg category, said, “I am aiming for gold at the Asian Games.”