National Games Off To A Great Start
The first part of the show was a spectacle; the cultural show didn't live up to the hype | By Yentha
On Feb 01, 2015

Trivandrum: The new stadium at Karyavattom was decked up like a bride on her wedding day. Such was the hope, expectation of the thousands that had gathered at Karyavattom. The home state once again displayed its warmth and hospitality in welcoming the 9000 plus participants of the 35th National Games. The Chief Minister, Oommen Chandy, the Sports Minister, T Radhakrishnan, Union Sports minister Sarbananda Sonowal, IOA president N Ramachandran spoke before the Union Minister for Urban Development, M Venkaiah Naidu declared the Games open.

In his speech, Naidu said that the Union Government would provide all support to the sports development in the country and he urged children and parents to take up sports as a part of their lives.

The march past was led by Services, the overall champion of the the last edition of the Games while the host Kerala brought up the rear. Amma's entry was greeted by a huge applause. The entry of the IOA flag too was greeted with warmth by the crowd. Later the Games torch was brought in and thirty former internationals took turns before K M Beenamol, had the honour to hand it to the Goodwill Ambassador of the Games, Sachin Tendulkar.

Sachin handed the torch to former sports superstars P T Usha and Anju Bobby George, before they lit the Games' 'torch' shaped in the form of a Nilaviakku - the traditional Kerala lamp. Later Kerala captain, Preeja Sreedharan, took the oath on behalf of all the athletes.

Percussion was the cornerstone of the cultural show that showcased the diversity of the traditional art forms in a three hour marathon. The highlight was ‘war cry’ led by actor Mohanlal, appearing in the role of the great commander, Kunjali Marikkar. The show turned musical with Lal again on the lead of India Singing, with singers from around the country singing classical songs of the 1930s to the 1980s.The India Singing programme was hyped to such an extent that when it eventually unravelled, it just didn't live up to expectations.

Others present on the occasion were Ministers Ramesh Chennithala, K M Mani, P K Kunhalikutty, K Babu, P K Abdu Rabb, Shibu Baby John, Adoor Prakash, Anoop Jacob, K C Joseph, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman P J Kurian, Shashi Tharoor MP and Mayor K Chandrika. Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan was, however, conspicuous by his absence.




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Kerala sports in relation to art will definitely make the central theme to include martial art forms like Kalarippayattu or velakali justifiable to take the front seat. Similar martial forms from other states could have been brought for the diverse representative guests of sport persons to project a holistic unity in diversity. Many states especially North east are rich in martial art forms connected appropriately to sports of the region. Just an opinion
P Velayudha Panicker, on Feb 01, 2015 10:26:51 AM
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