New Delhi: FICCI today launched Project Tokyo 2020 in a bid to provide COVID appropriate support to Tokyo bound Olympic and Paralympic athletes on behalf of corporate and industry. FICCI has launched this project on the opening day of the Tokyo Olympics in recognition of the role of sports in promoting unity and inclusivity in society.
Mr Sunil Chatrapal Kedar, Minister for Animal Husbandry, Dairy Development, Sports and Youth Welfare, Govt. of Maharashtra while launching ‘Project Tokyo 2020’ said, “FICCI has done a remarkable job to give a boost not just to the players, but their family as well. We should do everything in our capacity to encourage athletes and their family because sports not only mean winning medals, but they promote values for society as well.”
Addressing the webinar ‘PROJECT TOKYO 2020: INDUSTRY’S COVID APPROPRIATE SUPPORT’, organized by FICCI Mr Kedar said, “Sports teach us about equality in society and the value of never giving up on your goals. I pledge that the state of Maharashtra will always support FICCI in such initiatives.”
Dr Deepa Malik, President, Paralympic Committee of India said, “Japan has laid out a fantastic message of inclusivity in sports during the opening ceremony of the Olympics by including paralympians and athletes from different backgrounds in the official ceremony. India still has a long way to go to adopt such an approach. I urge the corporate sector to support paralympians in the same manner as conventionally mainstream athletes. Paralympians are the biggest medium to make the mindset of our country more inclusive.”
Prominent Indian para-athlete Mr Devendra Jhajharia said, “Corporate institutions have a big role to play in the life of individual athletes. This holds true even more so for para-athletes as the support that we require is relatively higher. Corporate sponsors and private companies are key in lending a helping hand in terms of training and making resources available to athletes so that we can focus singularly on giving our best performance in our respective sports.”
Former World Number 1 Men’s Singles badminton player Mr Kidambi Srikanth said, “The project launched by FICCI is a welcome initiative and will be appreciated by all the athletes in the Indian sports ecosystem. I feel grassroots development in sports is an aspect that can highly benefit from private intervention through development of physical and technical infrastructure. Private forums such as FICCI taking initiatives to develop sports is a welcome trend in recent years, and I am sure we will be able to see its benefits down the line sooner rather than later.”
Mr Chanakya Chaudhary, Co-Chair of Sports & Youth Affairs Committee, FICCI and Vice President – Corporate, TATA Steel Ltd. announced the strategic support plan from FICCI for Project Tokyo 2020: Industry’s Covid Appropriate Support. “As immediate measures, we are extending support to all our Tokyo bound athletes and their immediate families by initiating a PAN India free of cost vaccination drive for them. The immediate family members of the athletes can avail free virtual consultations with top doctors within their cities for a year. In addition, each Tokyo bound athlete will receive a Health & Wellbeing Kit consisting of some essential products like Fitness Bands, Oxymeters, Digital Thermometers, Reusable Face Masks, Sanitizers etc which we feel are apt for precautionary measures against COVID-19. Let us take this opportunity in a way of unification and innovation to emerge from this setback even stronger than before, by promoting the importance of live sporting events and supporting our Tokyo bound heroes in a befitting manner. The post-coronavirus world will need sport & its heroes, and we at FICCI are ready to contribute to shaping it with our moral values.”
Mr Dibyojyoti Mainak, Trustee, MPL Sports Foundation & SVP – Legal & Policy, MPL said, “It is a matter of great pride and pleasure for MPL to associate with FICCI for such an initiative. We at MPL are happy to support India’s Olympic athletes and their families in this time of need. Sports are integral to our society because it is a universal language where anyone can play irrespective of their background. This holds true more so for digital sports, which is why we aim to bridge the gap between physical and digital sports. We want to encourage athletes in the digital space and promote inclusivity by making sports more accessible.”