New York: Cricket legend Kapil Dev urges Indian parents to involve their children in sports. Then the country will produce more and more champions in different disciplines. Kapil said the mentality of Indian parents towards sports has changed drastically over the years, but more needs to be done.
Kapil was speaking after the historic triumph of the Indian shuttlers in the Thomas Cup badminton championship held in Bangkok. India outclassed Indonesia 3-0 in the Sunday final.
“I feel (it’s) the parents, not the kids. We produce more doctors, scientists, and engineers in our country because parents want them to. The day parents want their kid to become a sportsperson, we will produce all champions, “Kapil said here on Tuesday.
Kapil was invited as a guest to a special event hosted by the Consulate General of India in New York as part of the ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ celebrations to commemorate India’s 75 years of independence. The event was attended by members of the Indian diaspora and cricket fans.
Kapil, considered one of the greatest all-rounders of all time, cited an example in this regard, saying if his daughter has to appear for a 10th grade examination and simultaneously play for Junior India, he would tell her to “go and study”.
“But in America or Europe or Australia, they will say ‘drop this year’, play for junior for your country and next year you give the exam. That thought process in our country hasn’t changed yet, “said Kapil, who captained the Indian cricket team to its historic 1983 World Cup victory.
“Recalling his time as a young kid, Kapil noted that he used to hide his sports kit in his school bag and quietly go out and play, a scenario which has changed drastically with parents encouraging their children to take up sports.
“Today I feel so proud to see the parents taking their kids to come and play.”
The event was hosted by Indiaspora, a non-profit community of global Indian leaders. Kapil Dev was present as a guest. During his visit to the USA, a private screening of the movie “83” also took place.