Khelo India has given equality to all sportspersons: Ajay Jadeja -
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Khelo India has given equality to all sportspersons: Ajay Jadeja

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Khel Today Bureau 

New Delhi: Former India cricketer Ajay Jadeja said the inaugural Khelo India Para Games have given specially challenged athletes a great platform to rise and shine. Jadeja was at the JLN Stadium to give away awards to the winners of the Cerebral Palsy football tournament. Kerala defeated Tamil Nadu in the final 7-0.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Khelo India Para Games, Jadeja said, “No one used to look at Para Sports. Now, with this initiative, everyone is being treated equally and the Government is actually walking the talk when they are saying ‘Khelega India toh Jeetega India’. Khelo India itself has done a fabulous thing for all other sports. A structure has been created now to get in athletes from the rural areas. This structure allows the talents to flourish. It’s also given equality to all sportspersons.”

Commenting on the 100+ medal achievement by the country at both the Asian Games and the Asian Para Games, he added, “We had a great run at the Asian Games. The greater thing is that participation figures have gone up. Khelo India has been instrumental behind this. I would like to believe that the success of this Khelo India Para Games is not in the number of medals but it’s in the participation figures.

“So many athletes participating, a well-organised event and so much encouragement from the media makes for a very successful event. I wish them well for the Paris Paralympics. I also hope and pray that every sports competition is now not just seen as an event but also as a journey,” Jadeja added.

Kalyan Chaubey, the All India Football Federation president who also turned up for the medal presentation ceremony, heaped praise on the Cerebral Palsy football teams.

“The FIFA slogan says ‘Football Unites World’. And I take this opportunity to address that the Cerebral Palsy football teams would also be well included during our existing AIFF leagues in some capacity.”

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