At Rio Olympics, India plans to promote ‘Make in India’ initiative

A committee of secretaries from multiple ministries met discussed the possibility of setting up a Hospitality House.

Written by Mihir Vasavda | New Delhi | Updated: April 19, 2016 3:21 pm
rio 2016, rio olympics, eio olympics 2016, olympics, olympics 2016, rio olympics 2016, india olympics, olympics india, make in india, make in india campaign, sports news, sports The government is planning to set up a Hospitality House on the sidelines of the Rio Games. (Source: AP File)

COME August, a record Olympic medal haul won’t be India’s only target at Rio de Janeiro. On the sidelines of the multi-discipline showpiece event in Brazil, the government is planning to promote its flagship Make in India programme along with several other cultural and sporting initiatives, including an exhibition kabaddi match to showcase the sport as an Olympic discipline.

A committee of secretaries from multiple ministries met recently in Delhi to discuss the possibility of setting up a Hospitality House — a first for India at the Olympics — for the August 5-21 Games to showcase Indian art, culture, cuisine, tourism and the Make in India initiative.

The meeting included representatives from the ministries of external affairs, sports, culture and tourism, apart from officials linked to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion as well as the Make in India initiative.
Sports Secretary Rajiv Yadav said that they had recommended a few properties to the government to set up the Hospitality House.

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“Our embassy in Brazil came up with this proposal. The Hospitality House will be used to project Indian culture, cuisine, tourism, etc in Rio. The committee discussed it recently and have requested MEA to coordinate it further so that the sports ministry can focus on the main contingent,” Yadav told The Indian Express.

The concept of a Hospitality Houses during the Games isn’t uncommon — the ‘Japan House’ will be used to promote the 2020 Tokyo Olympics while USA and Germany will be setting up similar centres, too. But since this is a first for India, the budget is being worked out by the Ministry of External Affairs and the rest of the committee.

The sports ministry is also close to renting an apartment near the Olympic Village, which will be primarily used to store the special diet needed by wrestlers, including milk and almonds.

The Indian Olympic Association and the sports ministry were initially keen to use it as a base to serve Indian food to the contingent and were planning to send a chef as well. However, the plan was shelved after the International Olympic Committee decided to include Indian food on their menu, including vegetarian options.

An IOA official said there were concerns over the food getting contaminated or any banned product accidentally consumed an athlete, which was also one of the reasons they decided not to send a chef.

The apartment will instead be made available to the athletes for recreation as well as other “special needs”.

“It’s a special apartment for milk, almonds, etc., for wrestlers. Wrestling is a sport where they take this kind of diet because most of them are vegetarians and are dependent on it. There will also be a sitting lounge where they can watch Hindi movies so that they can stay normal and feel at home,” Yadav said.

The government is also planning to showcase kabaddi as an Olympic sport by conducting exhibition matches on the sidelines of the Games. Kabaddi, which features in the Asian Games, has been trying to make a push for the Olympics but hasn’t made the cut so far.

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  1. M
    Md Nasir
    Aug 11, 2016 at 3:27 am
    THE OLYMIPC
    Reply
  2. S
    Sk
    Apr 19, 2016 at 10:42 am
    Let's not make this a reason for Babus to fly and enjoy olympics at taxpayer expense
    Reply
  3. A
    A.s. Malhotra
    Apr 19, 2016 at 7:33 am
    Welcome initiative the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for launching various types of culture, art, tourism and sporting initiatives including "Make in India" at the Olympic to be held at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil during the month of August this year. it is suggested that if the Yoga and Meditation an ancient heritage of our Country should also be displa by expert trainers at the events. Further, the stalls of various herbal and other products for promotion healthcare manufactured by Patanjali owned by Baba Ramdev may be able to attract the foreigners for vegetarianism and as organic foods.
    Reply
  4. I
    Ishant
    Apr 19, 2016 at 11:41 am
    But the best publicity for us would be winning a few medals.
    Reply
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