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New Delhi : Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 29, 2019, launched the Fit India Movement on the occasion of National Sports Day at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium, New Delhi, in the presence of thousands of people from all walks of life. The Prime Minister said that ‘Fit India Movement’ should become a national goal. In an effort to inspire the nation, the Prime Minister said that Fit India Movement may have been started by the government but it is the people who have to take the lead and make it a success.

Among those present at the event included Union Minister for Rural Development, Agriculture and farmers Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar, Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’, and Union Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju. Live telecast of the programme ensured participation of people across the country.

Rijiju welcomed PM Narendra Modi, saying that he has been an inspiration for this movement. The Prime Minister had mentioned about the Fit India Movement in his latest edition of ‘Mann Ki Baat” on August, 25 2019.  A strong and progressive India calls for a fit India, the minister said. Rijiju said everyone needs to be mentally and physically fit.

The inaugural address was followed by a high-energy half-hour programme in which India’s rich indigenous heritage of sports and dance forms was showcased, and their importance in enhancing fitness was highlighted. Sporting activities like Kushti, kabaddi, gatka, kho-kho, mallakhamb, kaliryapattu, and many others sporting activities have been instrumental in improving the fitness quotient among Indians. Besides, men and women have traditionally been involved in participating in various regional dance forms during festivals, which have also contributed towards the enhanced fitness. With technological advancements, fast-moving lifestyles and the advent of mobile phones, these indigenous forms of fitness are fast losing their popularity, but these can be a great way to remain fit. The show stressed on the need to give up sedentary lifestyles and be active in daily life.

Envisioned by the Prime Minister, the nation-wide Fit India Movement aims to motivate every Indian to incorporate simple, easy ways of staying fit in their everyday life. The highlight of the function was the presence of National Fitness Icons, who have been hand-picked by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports for their continued dedication towards fitness, despite their age including 101-year-old Mann Kaur, who still runs marathons, 81-year-old Usha Soman who can still do push-ups and runs marathons with her son. They were were among the 20 fitness icons chosen to motivate citizens to lead a fit life. Recipients of this year’s Sports Awards were also present at the event.

In keeping with the spirit of the event, thousands of school children, cyclists, joggers, runners, aerobic dancers thronged the grounds of the IG stadium in the morning itself and displayed a range of fitness activities, according to a PIB release.

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