Bhubaneswar, August 17 (IANS) After spectacular performance at the recently concluded Olympics in Tokyo, both men’s and women’s hockey teams in India arrived in Bhubaneswar, the capital of Odisha, on Tuesday morning.
Amidst beats of dhol, traditional dance and cheers, the hockey teams received a great welcome at Biju Patnaik International Airport by the sponsoring state. After reaching the airport, the hockey players were driven to a hotel in the city under tight security.
“Welcome back team India !! After spectacular performances by the @TheHockeyIndia teams in # TokyoOlympics2020, they have today been wholeheartedly invited to #Bhubaneswar for the facilitation ceremony hosted by Odisha’s government, ”said Sports Minister Tusharkanti Behera in a tweet.
To welcome the teams to Odisha, the international sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik has created a sand art on Puri beach.
According to the schedule, Odisha’s Prime Minister Naveen Patnaik will congratulate the teams this evening after having a photo session with the teams at Kalinga Stadium. The prime minister may also announce some cash rewards for the teams, official sources said.
At the Olympics in Tokyo, the Indian men’s hockey team won the bronze medal after a gap of 41 years, while the women’s team entered the semifinals.
According to its previous announcement, the state government has given cash prizes of Rs 2.5 crore along with positions from DSP rank to Birendra Lakra and Amit Rohidas. Deep Grace Ekka and Namita Toppo, who were part of the Indian women’s team, have received Rs 50 lakh each. All four players belong to Odisha.
bbm / skp /