New Delhi [India], Aug. 28 : Tarlochan Singh, vice president of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) on Sunday welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's motivation and encouragement to the athletes who participated in the recently concluded Rio Olympics, saying it was much needed as the whole nation was upset with India's performance at the prestigious quadrennial event.
"It is a very good step. Sports is a very important part of the nation and when the Prime Minister himself takes so much interest in this, it should be welcomed," Singh told ANI.
"I think Prime Minister Modi's assertion that we should always encourage sports, is very crucial and important as people were upset with India's performance in the recently concluded Rio Olympics.
Prime Minister Modi at a very right moment has motivated the players. It was much needed," he added. Speaking during the 23rd edition of his monthly radio address, Mann ki Baat, the Prime Minister lauded the performances of gymnast Dipa Karmakar and medal winners - shuttler PV Sindhu and wrestler Sakshi Malik.
"I'm happy that girls from all over the country-PV Sindhu from south India, Sakshi Malik from the north and Dipa Karmakar from the Northeast-brought laurels for India," he said.
"I was filled with pride to see these girls taking on the task of making the country proud." Prime Minister Modi also remembered hockey legend Major Dhyanchand and said it was delightful to see Indians excited for the Olympic Games.
He also hailed the relentless coaching skills of Pullela Gopichand, which had resulted in bringing out fantastic talents in badminton like Sania Nehwal and P V Sindhu among others.