New Delhi [India], August 18 (ANI): India's para table tennis players Bhavina Hasmukhbhai Patel and Sonal Patel along with the Paralympic Committee of India (PCI) President Deepa Malik and Deputy Chef de Mission Arhan Bagati departed for Tokyo on Wednesday as the para-athletes gear up to participate in the Tokyo Paralympics.
They were accompanied by Founder Member of PCI J. Chandrashekhar and PCI Treasurer M. Mahadeva. "Para Table Tennis players Bhavina & Sonal ben depart for #Tokyo2020 today along with PCI President @DeepaAthlete, Founder Member Chandrashekharji, Treasurer M. Mahadevaji, Deputy CDM @IamArhanBagati & official support staff! #Paralympics #Praise4Para #Cheer4India," Paralympic India tweeted.
Earlier in the wee hours of Wednesday, a group of para-athletes had already left for Tokyo from Delhi's Indira Gandhi International airport. Ahead of departure, Tek Chand, a javelin thrower, had said, "I will try my best to win a medal. There were few hurdles but it is part of life. I overcame them. Today, I am going to play for the country."
Speaking to ANI, PCI chief Deepa Malik said that the Indian team looks in great shape. "Prime Minister Narendra Modi sent his wishes along with the Sports Minister, Anurag Thakur. I'm delighted. I'm in a different role as I'm not playing this year but it is a different feeling to work alongside para-athletes. The team looks in great shape. I wish them all the best for the games," she said.
54 para-athletes from across 9 sports disciplines will be heading to Tokyo to represent the nation. This is India's biggest ever contingent for the Paralympic Games. (ANI)