Sports Minister Anurag Thakur on Wednesday met the Indian athletes who returned from Nairobi after competing at the U-20 World Athletics Championships.
The Indian contingent returned with a haul of three medals that included two silvers and a bronze. Thakur expressed confidence that the young athletes will excel in future international competitions like Asian Games, Commonwealth Games and the Olympics.
"It is a big moment for us to cherish. We see a hope in you," Thakur was quoted as saying in release.
"Your performance is commendable in the backdrop of COVID-19. These were not easy times, these were not normal times," he added.
While the Indian mixed 4x400m relay team, comprising the quartet of Bharat S, Priya Mohan, Summy and Kapil, bagged the bronze medal on the opening day of the competitions, race walker Amit Khatri and long jumper Shaili Singh clinched silver medals in their respective events.
The minister said India currently has considerable bench strength, spanning various disciplines in sports and the government is focused on nurturing India's young athletes and handholding them towards podium finish.
The government will ensure all facilities and best training for the athletes to excel in international competitions, and the TOPS as well as training of elite athletes have been taken up towards this end, he explained.
Lauding the former athletes for coming up in the field of coaching, Thakur urged more such athletes to come forward to handhold young athletes and motivate them.