Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Friday be speaking to India's top athletes, including cricket stars such as current captain Virat Kohli, BCCI president Sourav Ganguly and batting legend Sachin Tendulkar, amid a national lockdown to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
A total of 49 athletes, along with sports minister Kiren Rijiju, will participate in the video call.
All sporting activities are currently shut and it is still not clear when normalcy will resume. The much-anticipated Indian Premier League is among the big-ticket Indian events suspended till April 15.
When Ganguly was asked about the development, he told PTI, "Yes, I will be joining our Honourable via video call. But I cannot tell you what will be discussed."
"They will ask them to pass across the message of maintaining the lockdown. He will urge them to post videos to keep people occupied," a sports ministry source revealed to PTI.
Cricketers form a major chunk of the participating list. Apart from Tendulkar, Ganguly and Kohli, others who will be participating include World Cup-winning former Mahendra captain Singh Dhoni, Rohit Sharma, former pacer Zaheer Khan, Yuvraj Singh and K L Rahul.
Apart from the top cricketers, Olympic silver medallist shuttler PV Sindhu, javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, chess wizard Viswanathan Anand, sprinter Hima Das, boxing stars MC Mary Kom and Amit Panghal, wrestler Vinesh Phogat, and teenage shooting sensation Manu Bhaker are among the accomplished athletes who will participate in the call.
The pandemic has caused more than 50 deaths in India. The global death toll has crossed 50,000.