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Business News/ News / India/  Tokyo Olympics: Anurag Thakur to flag off first batch of Indian athletes today
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Tokyo Olympics: Anurag Thakur to flag off first batch of Indian athletes today

A contingent of 88, including 54 athletes, support staff and Indian Olympic Association (IOA) representatives, will be given a formal send-off

India is sending its biggest contingent ever to Tokyo Olympics.Premium
India is sending its biggest contingent ever to Tokyo Olympics.

Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur and others will attend a formal ceremony to see off the first batch of Indian athletes as they leave for Tokyo to participate in the Olympics. The contingent of sportspersons and support staff will leave from New Delhi International Airport on Saturday.

Tokyo Olympics 2020, which was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, is set to begin in a week's time. While some Indian athletes will leave for Tokyo today, other will reach the city from various parts of the world where they are training.

India is sending its biggest ever contingent to represent the country at Olympics. A total of 127 athletes have qualified for the global sports event, surpassing the 117-strong contingent that went to Rio Olympics in 2016.

On Saturday, a contingent of 88, including 54 athletes, support staff and Indian Olympic Association (IOA) representatives, will be given a send off by Anurag Thakur, Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, and Nisith Pramanik, Minister of State, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports.

The two ministers will be joined by IOA's President Narinder Dhruv Batra and Secretary General Rajeev Mehta, and Sandip Pradhan, Director-General, Sports Authority of India (SAI), at the ceremony.

Athletes and support staff in eight sports - archery, hockey, badminton, table tennis, archery, judo, gymnastics, and weightlifting - will depart today from New Delhi. The biggest contingent will be that of hockey.

To ensure the safety of the athletes, all dignitaries attending the event will be tested for Covid-19, Sports Ministry said. Only those with negative test results will be attending the event, it further said, adding that all social distancing measures have been put in place for the send-off ceremony.

Meanwhile, the Indian shooting team has arrived in Tokyo on Saturday for the upcoming Olympic Games set to kick-off from July 23. Samples of the shooting contingent for the Covid-19 test mandated by Japan government have been collected and they are awaiting their results. Ace Indian weightlifter Saikhom Mirabai Chanu also arrived in Tokyo ahead of the Olympic Games on Friday.

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Published: 17 Jul 2021, 03:39 PM IST
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