A rendezvous with Olympic Champion Abhinav Bindra on ‘India’s best shot at The Olympic Dream’


Bhubaneswar: Celebrating International Olympic Day 2021, Tata Steel organised a webinar today in association with the Sports and Youth Services Department, Government of Odisha, Abhinav Bindra Foundation and Odisha Naval Tata Hockey High Performance Centre (ONTHHPC) on “India’s best shot at the Olympic dream”.

The key speaker on the occasion was none other than Mr.Abhinav Bindra, Olympic gold medalist and the Founder of Abhinav Bindra Foundation Trust (ABFT). Attendees of the webinar could gain several new perspectives on what it takes for an international level sports person to be a high performer, how to keep self-motivation at one’s best at all times and how to bounce back from a low and emerge victorious. There were also deliberations on how to create a culture of sports, develop wide spread sports infrastructure and tap grass root level talent and nurture them. All these were highly relevant especially when sports enthusiasts across India are waiting with baited breath for the world’s biggest sporting extravaganza, the Tokyo Olympics and performance of the Indian contingent in it.

The panel also included Mr.Vishal K Dev, Principal Secretary, Sports & Youth Services and Tourism, Government of Odisha; and Mr.Chanakya Chaudhary, Vice President, Corporate Services, Tata Steel. Mr.Rajiv Seth, Project Director, Odisha Naval Tata Hockey High Performance Center and Ms. Diksha Tiwari, Consulting Senior Associate Editor, My City Links Magazine, co-moderated a charged discussion.

Mr. Abhinav Bindra, Olympic Gold Medalist, Founder, ABTP, said, “The entire world has been consumed by this pandemic and athletes have to rise above the challenges and give their 100% to the games. Obstacles are part of our training and overcoming them takes courage and grit. The upcoming Olympic games will help the world see hope into the future which will be safe again. The real power of sports lies in what it can do for the community. We need to use sports and leverage it in developing the character of youngsters. Sports teaches us hard work, discipline, how to win and more importantly how to lose. Sports can shape the society by instilling values. We should keep our focus on happiness, the medals will follow.”

Mr. Chanakya Chaudhary, Vice President, Corporate Services, Tata Steel, said, “Tata Steel’s encouragement and support for sports in our country dates back nearly a century and is very much a part of its culture. It has been one of the foremost corporate promoters of Indian sports, a tradition started by the company’s first chairman Sir Dorabji Tata, who financed India’s first Olympic team to Antwerp, Belgium in 1920. Over the years, Tata Steel has built academies of excellence for football, archery, athletics, hockey and sport climbing and till date has produced 1 Padma Bhushan, 11 Padma Shri, 1 Khel Ratna, 6 Dronacharya, 1 Dhyanchand and 42 Arjuna Awardees in the field of sports. Tata Steel has twice received the prestigious Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puraskar from Government of India.

We wish the Indian contingent the very best for the much-awaited upcoming Tokyo Olympics and are confident that it will bring many laurels to our country.”

Mr. Vishal K Dev, Principal Secretary, Sports & Youth Services and Tourism, Government of Odisha, said:“There are bold predictions for India’s performance at Tokyo Olympics. As compared to previous editions, the situation will be very different, primarily because there have been better systems in place, with greater accountability and several schemes, initiatives and support from Government and all stakeholders. Going forward, we need to build on this system and incorporate Sports Science and Wellness programs to the training modules for the overall development of an athlete and for greater achievements at subsequent Olympics.”

“With this vision in mind, Odisha on its part, has developed a hub of high performance centres with a streamlined talent identification pathway and this combined with adequate sports infrastructure, grassroots development program and expertise from Sports partners is aiming to create a conducive landscape for future medal prospects”, he added.

The webinar was organsied as part of Tata Steel’s continuous efforts towards promoting sports in India. The session touched upon various aspects of Olympic Sports, from an Indian perspective, country’s current talent pool, the need for conducive sports ecosystem among others. The panelists also spoke about the physical and mental preparation of the players as the Covid-19 threat continues to threaten participating nations.

Sports has been integral to Tata Steel’s philosophy of nation building and it has been making relentless efforts to build a sporting culture locally and provide the right opportunities for local talent to grow.In India, Tata Steel spearheads the corporate promotion of sports through its constant encouragement to professional sportspersons, amateurs, and its own employees to pursue sports and excel. Tata Steel has been consistently involved in creating and nurturing professional sportspersons through its academies and grassroots feeder centres.

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