I’m a sportsperson first, then an actor: Akshay Kumar

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 07 May 2018 14:30:31


Principal Correspondent,

Khasdar Krida Mahotsav inaugurated with great fanfare

Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Indian badminton coach Pullela Gopichand, Bollywood Star Akshay Kumar grace the inaugural function

TERMING every sportsperson present at the Indoor Stadium of Divisional Sports Complex in Mankapur as champion, Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar made an important statement requesting parents to give equal importance to sports as they give to academics.
The ‘Khiladi’ of India cinema was in the city to inaugurate ‘Khelo Nagpur Khelo’ Khasdar Krida Mahotsav.
The sports festival, a brainchild of Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, will see 20 events being conducted for 20 days across the city.

The entertaining and excellent inauguration function was graced by Union and Sports Minister Olympic medallist Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and acclaimed Indian badminton coach Pullela Gopichand. Gadkari presided over the programme.
Rathore took the oath on behalf of the players while Arjuna awardee Vijay Munishwar hoisted the games flag.
The Indoor Stadium was packed with every seat occupied by players and their parents.

Jallosh Rock Band entertained audience with foot tapping Bollywood numbers from Punit Mishra even as spectators waited with bated breath for guests to arrive.
Akshay Kumar’s entry to the stadium was kept secret. A short clipping of Akshay’s movies was played on the giant screen which moved sideways to make way for India’s ‘Khatron ke Khiladi’ to appear on the dais to a huge applause.

Akshay started in Marathi with “Kasa kai Nagpur” to another huge round of applause.
“I don’t know acting. I am a sportsperson first, then an actor,” said the Bollywood star, who is also a martial art expert. “I request all parents to promote their wards in sports,” he added.

The function started with a march past from players of all 20 events to be held during the 20-day event. It was followed by beautiful performances by yoga team and malkhamb players which was well received by the guests and spectators. Dandpatta performance left spectators spellbound.

An excellent performance from a yoga team forced Akshay Kumar to jump from the 10-foot high dais and join them in the middle. Akshay, Rathore and Gopichand all were spellbound by each and every performance.
Gopichand and Rathore thanked Gadkari for starting this sports event at grassroot level. They both also lauded the day’s performance with Sports Minister Rathore labelling it as ‘Jhakkas’ show.

The demonstrations concluded with bodybuilders from Mumbai flexing their muscles.
Addressing the gathering, Akshay Kumar asked each and every player to remember that they are the champion.
“I am a champion. We are champions. Always remember this and keep it in mind forever if you all want to become a champion,” said the Bollywood actor.

In the end, the ‘Sainik’ of Bollywood asked all to sing along with him ‘sabse aage hoge Hindustani’.
Mayor Nanda Jichkar, MLAs Sudhakar Deshmukh, Milind Mane, Krishna Khopde and MLC Prof Anil Sole also shared the dais. Sandeep Joshi, convenor of the Khasdar Krida Mahotsav, conducted the programme.