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Olympics: Indians get formal welcome

A short display of Brazilian culture, including their music and dance, greeted the Indian contingent at the formal Welcome Ceremony in the Games Village for the 31st Olympic Games here.

One of the first and prominent ceremonies of the Games, which lasted about 45 minutes, saw more than half of the Indian contingent attend it. They were elegantly dressed in white India tracksuits and looked upbeat on eve of the Games.

The Indian Olympic Association President, Narayanswamy Ramachandran and Chef de Mission of the Contingent, Rakesh Gupta, presented the Mayor of the Village, ex-player basketball player and two-time Olympic medallist Janeth Arcain, with two gifts.

One of them was a pair of silver elephants and another was gold plated peacock with the IOA logo embossed at the bottom of the frame.

The show comprising Brazilian rhythms greeted the Inian delegation, alongside those from Bahamas, Burkina Faso, Gambia and Norway.

The Ceremony itself included raising each nation’s flag and playing their national anthems. The show started with a tribal dance spectacle before moving on to an assortment of Brazilian rhythms, including forró, samba and bossa nova. Music by late Brazilian legends Raul Seixas and Tim Maia was also played alongside some latest hits.

After the music and dance, the mayor of the Olympic Village, Arcain, gave a speech about the importance of the Games for humanity and welcomed the teams to Rio.

Those present included shooters, Jitu Rai, Prakash Nanjappa, Gurpreet Singh, Chain Singh, athletes Khushbir Kaur, Manpreet Kaur, women’s hockey team, swimmers, Sajan Prakash and Shivani Katariya and some of their coaches and officials. Also present were officials from the Indian Embassy in Brazil and officials from India.

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