The 51st inter IIT Sports Meet was inaugurated today with the opening ceremony being held in the afternoon. The ceremony was graced by the presence of Mr. KK Sharma, Secretary Designate, MHRD, Mr. R Subramaniam, additional secretary, technical education, MHRD, Mr. Devendra Jhajharia and Mr. Varun Bhati, paralympians. The ceremony was held in the Main Ground and began at 4 PM.
The event commenced with the Inter IIT flag being hoisted by the chief guest and the other dignitaries. The contingents’ fight for points began with the opening ceremony as they prepared for the march past, the first event of the meet. The 23 IITs marched in alphabetical order with Bhilai leading the march and Kanpur, the host at the back as tradition demands. It was a sight to watch both the strength of the 150 strong contingents of older IITs and the resolve and determination of newer and smaller contingents to make their mark. Dharwad entered the competition with the smallest contingent, consisting of 4 members and Kanpur with the most populous at 146. The all important tunes of the march past came from the 14th Sikh Light Infantry band, stationed at Kanpur Cantonment.
The General Secretary, Games and Sports, IIT Kanpur, administered the oath to all the participants in the sports meet, promising to abide by the sportsman spirit and to play to the best of their abilities.
Next, the symbolic torch run was completed on the track with four groups of three members each completing the circuit. The runners have all created a mark on the IIT Kanpur sporting scene and brought laurels for their institution. The first group had Rama Satya from volleyball, Vaibhav, a cricketer, and Anil Bisla from Aquatics. They handed the torch to Mainak Majumdar, captain of the football team, Vivek Dubey from Squash and Prabhu from Hockey. Next Ritesh Giri of the weightlifting team, Anisha Thomas and Manish carried the flame. The final lap was completed by Sonal Yadav, M Surya Prakash and Robinson Guria of the basketball, Athletics and weightlifting teams. The torch was used to light the flame which will burn throughout the meet, symbolising purity and perseverance.
The dignitaries then proceeded to share their thoughts on sports and Mr. Jhajharia and Mr. Bhati shared their specific experiences as olympians. Mr. Devendra Jhajharia recounted his tragic accident which led him to lose his left arm and the dedication which took him from practicing with a homemade wooden javelin to a world record holder in the sport. His journey from district champion in 1996 to world record holder in the 2004 Athens Paralympic Games was a continuous journey towards excellence. But the highlight of his career has been breaking his own record in the recently concluded 2016 Rio Olympics. He praised sports as a discipline for inculcating the values of unity and will power. He remarked jokingly that seeing the trophy on display on the podium, he felt like competing with the IITians right away. He implored all IITians to take inspiration from his story and to keep the service of the nation as their primary goal.
To conclude the programme, the Enthrall group, a professional acrobatics group ‘enthralled’ us with their gravity defying stunts. The audience watched in awe as they performed flips and jumps with no props or safety nets.
The results of the march past were announced after the conclusion of the event and Kanpur and Roorkee shared the top spot with multiple ties for the second and third place.
Written by Simrat Singh