President felicitates Olympic medal winners

August 18th, 2012 - 5:38 pm ICT by IANS  

Pranab Mukherjee New Delhi, Aug 18 (IANS) President Pranab Mukherjee congratulated India’s Olympic medal winners at a felicitation ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhavan Saturday, hoping for a ‘medal spring’ at the next Olympics.

Speaking on the occasion, Mukherjee called for the creation of sports infrastructure across the country, nurturing of talent at grass root level and promotion of a sporting culture. He complimented the medal winners adding that those who did not win medals have also done India proud.

“I congratulate the Indian Contingent for their performance in London. Those who won medals deserve the highest of praise. But those who did not, also, deserve equal appreciation and encouragement,” said India’s 13th president.

He also said that compared to the medal drought of the past, six medals was a good harvest. However, a nation of 1.2 billion deserves a higher position than No.55 on the medals table.

“There is no time to rest on laurels. We must collectively lift our nation to greater heights. Let this be a moment when we re-dedicate ourselves to the building of India’s sporting future. Let us set our goals high and tell ourselves ‘Rio, here we come’. I am confident that nothing less than a ‘medal spring’ awaits us at the next Olympics,” said Mukherjee, talking about the next Olympics to be held in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

The President presented commemorative plaques to the six medal winners: Sushil Kumar, Vijay Kumar, Gagan Narang, Saina Nehwal, MC Mary Kom and Yogeshwar Dutt.

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