In a country where cricket is at par with religion, getting people to watch, appreciate, and pay attention to other sports is a massive task. But slowly and steadily, we are getting there. Not at the expense of cricket, but with the power of accomplishment.
Under the leadership of PM Modi, the sporting culture in the country is getting changed. Efforts, decisions, money, and a lot of other things are going into what can only be described as a major overhaul.
Thomas Cup Victory - Behind the scenes
The recent Thomas Cup win for India is a prime example of that fact. The victory is of such an unprecedented scale that it is being compared to the 1983 World Cup triumph. When was the last time that happened?
But for those who follow the industry inside out, it isn't a surprise for them. The victory has been in the making for over four years. The Modi government has spent close to Rs. 70 crore on Indian badminton - one of the highest ever among previous governments.
From games to camps and to foreign exposure, the monetary backing has played a significant part. The results are for everyone to see.
Brainchild of PM Modi - Khelo India
We have always heard that India is full of talent waiting to be identified and nurtured. Khelo India was started in 2018 under the leadership of Modi. It is a scheme that looks to revive the sporting culture at the grassroots level of the country and helps in Talent Indentification.
Lakshya Sen was part of that victory, and he was identified through the Khelo India games, a scheme that is another masterstroke of the current government. Getting the biggest prize in badminton is sure to gather a lot of attention.
The organisation of Khelo India games is helping talent identification at the grassroots level of the country. Mehuli Ghosh, Manu Bhaker, and Saurabh Chaudhary are just a few names to have benefitted from the scheme.
Take into example the heroics at the Tokyo Olympics. India ranked 43rd in the medals tally, the best in over four decades. Neeraj Chopra's gold medal win was sensational and gave track and field the attention it deserved.
Chopra was part of the Target Olympic Podium Scheme or TOPS, which looks to provide special facilities and training to the prospective medal candidates.
Honouring the Indian Deaflympics Contingent
The Indian Deaflympics contingent scripted history as the country recorded its best-ever performance at the event, winning seven bronze, one silver and eight gold medals.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosted the entire Indian Contingent at his residence at 9:30 AM on Saturday.
After the interaction, PM Modi took to Twitter to share several pictures from the gathering and wrote, "I will never forget the interaction with our champions who have brought pride and glory for India at the Deaflympics. The athletes shared their experiences and I could see the passion and determination in them. My best wishes to all of them."
The times are changing, and the vision for India to become a sporting nation by 2047 may soon be a reality. Bring it on! We are ready.