Feel privileged and honoured to be among sportspersons from our neighbourhood and brothers and sisters from SAARC countries: PM Modi
Guwahati is now a modern and vibrant city and a hub of all economic activities in the North-Eastern Region of India
This sports meet is perfect blend of 3- Teamwork, togetherness and talent: PM
South Asian Games celebrates togetherness of all South Asian Nations: PM Modi
All round development of personality is incomplete without sports. Sports bring with it the most vital sportsman spirit: PM
My vision for South Asia is same as my vision for India – Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas: PM
All South Asian countries are partners in our journey towards development: PM

I feel privileged and honoured to be among sportspersons from our neighbourhood and brothers and sisters from SAARC countries. I welcome all of you to India, a country known for its culture of अतिथि देवो भव: and to this beautiful city of Guwahati known for its hospitality and love for sports.

What moves me today, is your electrifying presence, full of excitement and enthusiasm for this important international sports event on the banks of the mighty Brahmaputra.

Guwahati has come a long way since the days of Pragjyotishpur in Ancient India. It is now a modern and vibrant city and a hub of all economic activities in the North-Eastern Region of India.

Young people in the North-East and especially here in Assam do not miss any opportunity to witness a good football match. This fame has spread so far and wide that the FIFA World Cup Under-17 which will be hosted first time in India in 2017 has chosen Guwahati as a prime venue for the event.

This sports meet, for me signifies a perfect blend of 3 Ts - Talent, Teamwork and Togetherness. Among us is the best and most youthful talent from across South Asia. You are proud members of your team - it can be your team of the sport you play and a larger team of the nation you are representing. And, at the same time this meet also celebrates togetherness of all South Asian nations. Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka – no matter which country we are from, we all call South Asia our home.

Sports has to be an essential part of an individual’s life. A good game is both healthy and refreshing. All round development of the personality is incomplete without sports. Most importantly, sports brings with it the most vital sportsman spirit. Without sports, there cannot be any sportsman spirit. This sportsman spirit will not only help you on the field but also in other aspects of your life. You will cherish whatever you learn on the sports field for your entire life. I always say - Jo Khele, woh Khile. The person who plays, shines.

The mascot of these games ‘TIKHOR‘represents a baby rhino who is sharp and intelligent. It captures the spirit of sports persons and young sport lovers.

The theme song of the games is "Ei prithivi ekhan krirangan, krira hol shantir prangan" sung by legendary late Dr. Bhupen Hazarika.

A singer whose captivating voice left people spellbound; his song beautifully captures the spirit of South Asian Games, the spirit of peace, friendship and prosperity.

I have been told by Shri Sarbananda Sonowalji that the Organizing Committee for the Games has brought waters from each of the eight SAARC countries and these waters will be merged to signify shared aspirations and cooperative spirit amongst the SAARC nations.

Dr. Bhupen Hazarika’s song “We are in the same boat brother” which you are going to hear soon is all about SAARC nations. We should join hands together as a family. Let us kindle this spirit of friendship through sports in South Asian Games.

My vision for South Asia is the same as my vision for India – Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas. All South Asian countries are partners in our journey towards development.

We the people living in SAARC countries comprise 21 per cent of the world’s population and contribute about 9 per cent to its economy.

As we gather today to commence the 12th South Asian Games, for 23 sporting events covering both men and women, we bring sports-persons from all SAARC countries to India’s North-East and to this great city in a spirit of friendship, trust and understanding.

I am sure that as the Games proceed, this feeling of friendship trust and understanding will convert itself not only into sporting opportunities but also into business and tourism opportunities as well.

Let these Games become a spring board for bringing peace and prosperity in the region through business, interaction and sporting activities. Let this be an opportunity for SAARC people to realize their potential.

Sportsmanship is a philosophy of life harmonizing in a balanced whole the qualities of endurance, will and mind. The challenge for performance, the joy of effort, the cheer of success, the spirit of friendship and fairplay in a sports arena speak volumes about how culture, education, ethics, dignity and society get intertwined with each other during such sports events.

On the sports field, we can forget what separates us, and we can truly connect with each other in the spirit of sportsmanship and adventure.

We can celebrate our diversity, and at the same time, be united under common rules for our sports, and the shared values of honesty and fair play.

Let us play for peace: let us play for prosperity. Let us play with full vigour and enthusiasm so that we remember these Games even after they are over.

The friendships you would form over these 12 days, and the memories you take back will last you a lifetime.

I am confident that you will cherish these bonds, and become Ambassadors for peace and friendship between our nations.

While people play for medals and provide tough competition to each other, I urge the sports-persons and visitors here to take time from their busy schedules to visit the places of tourism attraction and wonderful wildlife sanctuaries nearby.

Once again I welcome our friends from SAARC countries. Let the spirit of ‘Gurukul’ prevail for two weeks in Guwahati as sportspersons share with each other their best and take back great feeling of warmth and remarkable experience.

Let the competition be in true sports man spirit. May the best win.

I declare the 12th South Asian Games open.

Thank you.

Explore More
No ifs and buts in anybody's mind about India’s capabilities: PM Modi on 77th Independence Day at Red Fort

Popular Speeches

No ifs and buts in anybody's mind about India’s capabilities: PM Modi on 77th Independence Day at Red Fort
Railways cuts ticket prices for passenger trains by 50%

Media Coverage

Railways cuts ticket prices for passenger trains by 50%
NM on the go

Nm on the go

Always be the first to hear from the PM. Get the App Now!
Viksit Bharat Ambassador Meet-Up in Pune: Volunteers Assemble To Pledge Towards Building a Developed India
February 28, 2024

Volunteers in Pune responded to PM Narendra Modi's call to become "Viksit Bharat Ambassadors" by hosting a national meet-up on February 28th at the Sumant Moolgaokar Auditorium, MCCIA. The objective of this meet-up was to gather local support for the Viksit Bharat Ambassador movement, which aims to make a developed India (Viksit Bharat) a reality by 2047.

The event was attended by Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Hon'ble Minister of State for IT, Skilling and Entrepreneurship. Distinguished entrepreneurs, institution owners, corporates, and professionals from Pune were also present.

"In 2014, the economy that was left behind was one of the fragile five. 16 quarters of runaway inflations, 18 quarters of declining growth, a financial sector that had been shattered beyond bits, and an overall image of dysfunctional governance that was causing investors to pause and re-look at India. That was from 2004-14, which we refer to as a lost decade. From 2014-19, PM Modi rebuilt the economy and financial sector... The second term was about building the New India..." said Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar at the 'Viksit Bharat Ambassador Meet'.

The Vision of Viksit Bharat: 140 crore dreams, 1 purpose

The Viksit Bharat Ambassador movement aims to encourage citizens to take responsibility for contributing to the development of India. To achieve this goal, VBA meet-ups and events are being organized in various parts of the country. These events provide a platform for participants to engage in constructive discussions, exchange ideas, and explore practical strategies to contribute to the movement.

Join the movement on NaMo App:


The NaMo App: Bridging the Gap

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's personal app, the Narendra Modi App (or NaMo App), is a crucial technological link in taking this vision forward. The NaMo App has provided a platform for citizens to join, stay informed and create events around the Viksit Bharat Ambassador movement. Participants can easily track down and engage with various initiatives in their locality and connect with other like-minded individuals. The 'VBA Event' section in the 'Onground Tasks' tab of the 'Volunteer Module' of the NaMo App allows users to stay updated with the ongoing VBA events.

Ravi Petite, Managing Director of Agni Solar Pvt Ltd, highlighted the significant impact of PM Modi's vision on the booming solar energy industry, expressing confidence in its continuous growth without any signs of slowdown.

Dr. S Sukanya Iyer, Chairperson of the Mentoring Panel at CII's BYST, highlighted PM Mdoi’s commitment to inclusivity with the motto 'Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas, and Sabka Prayas’ and inclusive approach for balance regional development from Kashmir to Kanyakumari.

Hemant Thakkar, the Technical Director of Pawar Rubber Products, acknowledged significant changes over the past 8-10 years, particularly highlighting government initiatives aimed at supporting entrepreneurs and MSMEs.

Investment Advisor Mandar Shende proposes that if all 140 crore Indians support the PM's vision of Viksit Bharat, India could achieve developed status by 2037 instead of 2047. He emphasized that this goal is not solely PM Modi's but belongs to every Indian.

Anurag Dhooth, MD of Epitome Component Pvt Ltd, emphasized that Viksit Bharat represents progress for all sections of society, noting ongoing transformative developments and global attention towards India.

Indraneel Chitale of Chitale Bandhu Mithaiwale commended the campaign, remarking that it effectively portrays India's narrative on the global stage.

Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar encouraged citizens of Pune to join the movement towards building Viksit Bharat as envisioned by PM Modi by becoming Viksit Bharat Ambassadors. He highlighted India's remarkable transformation over the past decade, evolving from a fragile economy to one among the top five globally, and now serving as an inspiration to nations worldwide.