The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and the JSW Group on Thursday announced the first-of-its-kind partnership that will see the group setting up of the Indian Olympic Hospitality House in Tokyo during the Summer Olympics next year.
As a first step towards this direction, the official India House logo was unveiled by Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Kiren Rijiju in the presence of IOA president Dr Narinder Dhruv Batra, IOA Secretary General Rajeev Mehta, JSW Sports Director Parth Jindal and JSW Sports CEO Mustafa Ghouse, at an event here on Thursday.
"I attended my first Olympics in Rio in 2016 and realised that the Olympics is a celebration of not just sport, but a global collaboration. I visited the hospitality houses of many countries but realised that there wasn't one for India. I felt that India has a great opportunity to showcase their culture through India House at the Olympics and that's where the journey started," said Jindal.
Scheduled to be operational from July 2020, the India Olympic Hospitality House will be set up over an area of 2,200 sqm in close proximity to the Games Village and multiple Games venues in the Ariake region of Tokyo. It will offer a range of activities and experiences for traveling fans and supporters, who will be in Tokyo for the quadrennial sporting extravaganza.
IOA president Batra said that the India House would be a home away from home for Indian athletes and fans at the Tokyo Olympics.
"The India House is a great initiative. We are pleased the JSW has come on board to showcase our culture and heritage at the Olympics through this Hospitality. We hope the Indian athletes and fans feel at home in a foreign land during the Tokyo Olympics," he said.
IOA secretary general Rajeev Mehta, who was involved in the process of identifying the proposed site for the India House, highlighted that the event would be special as it would mark the centenary of India's participation at the Olympic Games.
Indian athletes first participated in the Olympic Games in 1920 at Antwerp, Belgium.
The official India House logo, unveiled by the Sports Minister, is inspired by Indian national elements like the lotus, peacock and the heritage arch. It will provide a window for the world to look at India and its heritage during the Games and combines the historical side of India with a modern outlook.
"The India House at the 2020 Olympics is an amazing concept. We need a team to produce a sports champion. We have to create the right ambience for our athletes at the Olympics. The India House will represent the idea of India at the Tokyo Games," said Rijiju.
The 2020 Tokyo Olympics will begin from July 24 and will conclude on August 9, next year.
( With inputs from ANI )