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Impressive function to mark Kerala Sports Day

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The Kerala Governor, R.S. Gavai, lights the traditional lamp to mark the inauguration of the birth centenary of Col. G.V. Raja; Sports Minister, M. Vijayakumar and the head of the Travancore royal family, Uthradom Thirunal Marathanda Varma, are also seen.
The Kerala Governor, R.S. Gavai, lights the traditional lamp to mark the inauguration of the birth centenary of Col. G.V. Raja; Sports Minister, M. Vijayakumar and the head of the Travancore royal family, Uthradom Thirunal Marathanda Varma, are also seen.

Special Correspondent

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Governor, R.S. Gavai, on Monday called upon the younger generation to strive hard so as to bring glory to the country from the international arena. Speaking after inaugurating the birth centenary celebrations of the late Col. G.V. Raja and proclaiming the day as the Kerala Sports Day at an impressive civic function at the VJT hall here, the Governor recalled the contributions of the founder president of the Kerala State Sports Council (KSSC) towards building basic sports infrastructure in the State and promoting various sports disciplines among the people.

The Governor said the late Raja could well have lived a luxurious life as a member of the erstwhile Travancore royal family but chose to work among the common people, promoting sports, tourism and aviation. Mr. Gavai, who launched the project document of the revamped Operation Olympia scheme, also gave away cash awards to 12 selected sportspersons who won medals in the various National events between 2004 and 2007. Rs. 1.40 crore was distributed to over 1,200 sportspersons for their achievements during the same period, separately.

No better tribute

The Sports Minister, M. Vijayakumar, who presided, said there could be no better tribute other than observing G.V. Raja’s birthday as the Kerala Sports Day.

The Minister said the Government would take all necessary steps to upgrade the facilities at the G.V. Raja Sports School in the outskirts of the city. Similarly, two new sports schools will be opened shortly in Kochi and Kannur.

The head of the Travancore royal family, Uthradom Thirunal Marathanda Varma, in his keynote address spoke eloquently about his late brother-in-law, who always carried sports and games close to his heart.

The Thiruvananthapuram Mayor, C. Jayan Babu and MLAs, V. Sivan Kutty and V. Surendran Pillai offered felicitations.

Mr. Sivan Kutty, in his capacity as president of the Thiruvananthapuram District Football Association, also announced the TDFA’s decision to revive the G.V. Raja all-India football tournament after a gap of 24 years.

The revived tournament will be held during December-January and will witness five teams from within the State and 10 from outside the State in action, he said.

The KSSC president, T.P. Dasan welcomed the gathering and secretary, G. Kishore proposed a vote of thanks.

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