Guwahati, 13 April, 2023: The Assam Olympic Association (AOA), the apex body of sports in the state, felicitated boxing sensation Lovlina Borgohain, who recently won the IBA World Boxing Championship; Nayanmoni Saikia, who won the Gold at the Commonwealth Games; and Hemanta Kalita, Secretary General of Boxing Federation of India at a gala ceremony today. The Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and Ayush as well as President of AOA, Sarbananda Sonowal graced the occasion as the chief guest where the star athletes of the state were felicitated.
The star performers were felicitated by Sarbananda Sonowal with a Gamusa, a Japi, a memento, and a cheque of rupees fifty-thousand, each, at the event, in the august presence of leading personalities of the state.
AOA also felicitated boxing aces Kalpana Choudhury, Bhagyawati Kachari, Pwilao Basumatary and Ankushita Boro; Triple Lawn Bowls champions Mridul Borgohain and Putul Sonowal; as well as Boxing coach Trideep Borah for their stupendous contributions in their respective fields of sport. The athletes were also accorded warm welcome and felicitated by many sports bodies of the state. The event was also attended by Bhubaneswar Kalita, MP from Rajya Sabha (Assam), eminent media personalities Jayanta Baruah, Sanjive Naraine, Pranay Bordoloi and Rajdeep Bailung Baruah apart from Lakhya Konwar, General Secretary, AOA; Tapan Das, Treasurer, AOA among other top officials of the association and other sports bodies of Assam.
Speaking on the occasion, the Union Minister and President, AOA, Sarbananda Sonowal said, “Many congratulations to all the sportspersons who are being felicitated here today. You have not only made us proud with your immaculate display by delivering record winning performance but also, and most importantly, gave hope to the sports fraternity of Assam towards a better & brighter future. The sports in India underwent a revolutionary change under the leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji. It was Modi ji who created a conducive environment by making policy changes to enable our athletes to perform and excel at the global stage, while also evolving national level competitions to act as conduits towards champion performances.”
Speaking about the potential of Northeast India, Sonowal added, “The potential of sports in our region is humongous. Our Prime Minister has always underlined the importance of sports towards building a Swastha Bharat. The immense potential of the Northeast India in sports was also recognised by Modi ji. This is the reason why India’s first sports university was set up in Imphal. As Modi ji always identifies NE equals to New Engine of India’s growth. The revolutionary TOPS programme has been a game changer. Under Modi ji’s leadership, our effort to support our athletes and towards building an environment conducive for better performance of our sportspersons remain absolute.”
Speaking on the occasion, IBA World Boxing Champion and Olympic Medalist, Lovlina Borgohain, said, “I must thank Assam Olympic Association for according this honour to me here today. It motivates me to keep going forward. We hope that this feat here today will further the awareness of sports as a successful career option. I must personally thank Sarbananda Sonowal sir for extending all possible help in my journey as a sportsperson. In order to create awareness about various aspects of sports, we have started a foundation where we intend to educate upcoming sportspersons about various issues or concerns that one face while competing at the top level. From diet to medicine or importance of nutrition are crucial for any sportspersons. Our foundation will guide the sportspersons in many such aspects of sports. As a start, we are planning to conduct medical check up for 1000 athletes in the coming months.”
Speaking on the occasion, Commonwealth Games Medalist in Lawn Bowling, Nayanmoni Saikia said, “It is a matter of great pride for me that AOA has felicitated me today. I am sure this will inspire many to take up Lawn Bowl sports professionally, to win more medals for Assam and India in the days to come. I must thank Sarbananda Sonowal sir for his steadfast support all these years – from my days of struggle until now – to concentrate on sports and for his constant encouragement to deliver the best possible performance at every event.”
Hemanta Kalita, Secretary General, Boxing Federation of India (BFI), said, “Humbled by the honour bestowed upon me by the Assam Olympic Association here today. My role as a sports administrator to facilitate for best performance of our athletes has been a journey that I cherish every day. It gives me immense pleasure that this beautiful journey is acknowledged by the association here today. This has inspired me to do my best in order to facilitate our boxers to deliver winning performances of global repute.”
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