Ace Hockey Defender Dipsan Tirkey was conferred with Ekalabya Puraskar 2017 at XIMB in Bhubaneswar. Legendary badminton coach Pullela Gopichand who attended the function as chief guest presented memento along with citaion and a cheque of Rs. 5,00,000. Spinter Amiya Mallick and national women’s hockey team player Deep Grace Ekka were feliciated with a citation and a Rs.50,000 each. Sri Chandra Sarathi Behera, Minister of Sports and Sri B K Sharma, DG, Fire Service Department graced the occasion with their presence.
Gopichand in his speech said that sports can bring nation together. He also said that there are a few promising atheletes in Odisha and if they get proper facility and training , they can become world beaters.
Addressing the gathering Gopichand said that sports should not be taken up as discipline only. Sports is not just about creating sportspersons rather it should become an integral part of life, something that imbibes in us physical and mental fitness and make better human beings.