COVID-19: Young footballers have shown young India is ready: Rijiju

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New Delhi, April 1 (IANS) Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju has lauded the Indian men’s football team and former players for their helping hand towards the fight against COVID-19, saying young athletes have shown the way.

“I congratulate the Men’s National Football Team, @chetrisunil11 and his boys & some ex-footballers for coming forward to contribute 50 lakhs to #PMCaresFund. Our young football players have shown that young India is ready to do it’s bit as #IndiaFightsCorona,” Rijiju said in a tweet.

The minister also appreciated Hockey India for their contribution to the cause.

“I appreciate Hockey India for contributing Rs 25.00 lakh towards the #PMCaresFund showing solidarity in India’s resolve to fight against the Covid-19 Pandemic. #IndiaFightsCorona,” he said in another tweet.

Indian football team captain Sunil Chhetri said in a tweet on Tuesday that the members of the team have come together and “put on table a sum that has been sent to the PM-Cares Fund” to help in the fight against coronavirus.

Chhetri added that the reason why he is mentioning this on Twitter is so others who have the capacity to make donations are inspired to do so.

“We’ve always received more than we can give. Which is why in this time of need, all of us national team players have come together and put on the table a sum that has been sent to the PM-Cares Fund to help India’s fight with the pandemic,” said Chhetri in a series of tweets.

“It’s been heartening to see everyone — cutting across caps, goals, age and experience — give, and give with a smile. When word got out, even some who have long stopped pulling on an India shirt, turned up and asked to be counted. That’s what a team is all about.

“The ONLY reason we’re talking about this here is so that it can gently prod those who have been fortunate enough to get, to give back. We’re in this together.”

The All India Football Federation has also pledged to contribute Rs 25 lakh to the PM CARES Fund.

Hockey India on Wednesday also pledged to contribute Rs 25 lakhs towards the PM Cares Fund.

Over 1,400 COVID-19 positive cases have been reported so far in India and 35 people have lost their lives.