NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday launched a nation-wide Fit India Movement and urged people to become more aware of health and good life.
Viewed as a huge health enthusiast himself, Prime Minister asked people to take the pledge for a fitter India.
At a colourful ceremony, which included a presentation of India's indigenous martial art forms, dances and sports, Modi said technology has contributed to a sedentary lifestyle.
"Fitness has always been an integral part of our culture. But there is indifference towards fitness issues now. A few decades back, a normal person would walk 8-10km in a day, do cycling or run," Modi said at the event.
"But with technology, physical activity has reduced. We walk less now and the same technology tells us that we are not walking enough," he added.
Addressing a large crowd of children who put up a grand show ahead of the launch at the Indira Gandhi Stadium Complex here, Modi said: "We should make fitness our mantra for life."
Today, on National Sports Day we pledge to strength Fit India Movement! https://t.co/0BmpLreJPP— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 29, 2019
The 'Fit India Movement' has been organised to celebrate the 'National Sports Day' and the campaign aims to encourage people to inculcate physical activity and sports in their everyday lives, a statement said.
Many celebrities and sports personalities including the likes of Shilpa Shetty, World Badminton champion PV Sindhu, sprinter Hima Das along with celebrated wrestlers Bajrang Punia and Sakshi Malik are supporting the movement ardently.
In today's fast-paced life, being fit is as important as breathing. So, I urge you all to join me in our Hon'ble Prime Minister, @PMOIndia‘s initiative, the ‘Fit India’ campaign. Pledge to make fitness a way of life today.@KirenRijiju @Media_SAI #SwasthRahoMastRaho #FitIndia pic.twitter.com/a1xB682c08— SHILPA SHETTY KUNDRA (@TheShilpaShetty) August 28, 2019
The launch was also attended by Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju and this year's National Sports Awards winners among others.
"We will take this movement to new heights with the cooperation of my fellow Indians.
"I am so glad that this movement is being launched on the birth anniversary of Major Dhyan Chand, our hockey wizard," Rijiju said at the launch.
Ahead of the event launch, Minister of State (Independent Charge) Youth Affairs and Sports Kiren Rijiju tweeted: "Tremendous supports are coming from all sections of the society to participate in the Fit India Movement to be launched by PM Narendra Modiji...
"Chief Ministers, corporates and many icons are taking amazing steps to make the programme a grand success."
Asked by the University Grant Commission, universities have prepared for the Fit India Movement.
The Prime Minister also congratulated the winners of the national sports awards and lauded India's sporting achievements.
"Be it boxing, badminton, tennis or any sport, our athletes are giving new wings to our aspirations.
"Their medals are not just a result of their hard work but also a reflection of a new India's confidence," he said.