In a grand ceremony held at Sangay Lhaden Sports Academy, Chimpu near Itanagar, the 6th Edition of the state-level Hangpan Dada Memorial Trophy tournament for football and volleyball commenced today. The event, spanning over 10 days, witnessed the participation of 500 talented players from all 25 districts of Arunachal Pradesh.
Dignitaries graced the occasion, with Er Taba Tedir, Minister of Education, attending as the Chief Guest, and Mama Natung, Minister for Sports & Youth Affairs cum Forests & WRD, attending as the Guest of Honour. Also present were IAS Talo Potom, Deputy Commissioner of Capital Itanagar, Lokam Anand, Corporator of Ward No. 1, and Tadar Appa, Director of the Sports Department.
Addressing the enthusiastic players and officials during the opening ceremony, Mama Natung, Minister for Sports & Youth Affairs, emphasized the significance of the event, named after the late Ashok Chakra recipient, Hangpan Dada. He highlighted Hangpan Dada's courageous sacrifice in fighting terrorists in 2016 and urged the participants to emulate the dedication and patriotism displayed by soldiers.
Mama Natung reaffirmed the government's commitment to promoting sports and developing state-of-the-art infrastructure to facilitate a conducive environment for athletes. He stressed that sports offer tremendous career opportunities and called upon the participants to play with dedication and strive for excellence, just like the brave soldiers who defend the nation.
Chief Guest Er Taba Tedir, Minister of Education, lit the tournament lamp and unfurled the tournament flag. A solemn moment of silence was observed to honor the martyred soldier. Tedir emphasized the importance of sports and commended Arunachal Pradesh's athletes for bringing laurels to the state in various sports. He highlighted the state's growing reputation as a hotspot destination for sports enthusiasts and announced upcoming plans to host more prestigious events within Arunachal Pradesh.
With a total of 25 teams representing districts from across the state, the 10-day tournament will witness fierce competition in both men's and women's categories for the coveted football and volleyball titles.
Speaking to the media, Tadar Appa, Sports Director, shed light on the significance of the Hangpan Dada Memorial Trophy. He expressed the need to enhance the event by involving players from the national team to guide and inspire local talents. Appa emphasized the theme of the sports event, "Drugs choro khel se joro" (Quit drugs, embrace sports), and highlighted the importance of sports in promoting a healthy and drug-free society. He also announced that the family members of Late Hangpan Dada would grace the closing ceremony of the event, which is organized by the Sports Department of Arunachal Pradesh.
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