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Sports Minister: WSH is India's contribution to Wo (2/29/2012)
--K.. Arumugam
Sports Minister hails WSH, calls it India’s contribution to world hockey

“Sports needs sponsors. It needs to entertain masses. Indian hockey needed big ones on these lines, and World Series Hockey is therefore a welcome development”

Thus spake Sports Minister Ajay Maken during the opening ceremony of the World Series Hockey in Chandigarh an hour before.

The Delhi based Minister was not present in Chandigarh, but his video message was broadcast in the opening moments of Grand Opening Ceremony now being underway.

In his brief but impressive 3-minute message, the minister traced the history of Indian hockey and hailed its legends, before calling Dhyan Chand India’s contribution to the world.

“Pele is Brazil's contribution to world, so we have Dhyan Chand, our contribution to the world’, he said.

While expressing happiness that India now possesses eight floodlight hockey stadium -where incidentally the World Series Hockey will now be held -- he hailed Delhi’s Major Dhyan Chand Stadium as the world’s best.

Dwelling on the tradition of India, he said’, “We are not only known for tradition, but also innovation. The rules and regulations of WSH is such that it merits to be called innovative and it will be beneficial to world of hockey”.

Naming hockey as 'Dil Ka Dhadkan' (heartbeat of India), he said: “We have achieved excellence in other sports. Still hockey has a special place in our hearts”.

"Hockey is a sport that brought laurels for 40 years", he nostalgically recollected.

The minister thanked Indian Hockey Federation and others for putting in place WSH.

The minister's whole-hearted supported to WSH must have been a big relief for the WSH organizers who seemed to have encountered myriad obstacles in their way.

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