Indian cricket skipper Virat Kohli’s fitness challenge to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and his subsequent acceptance for the same took social media by storm last week. Kohli had tagged the prime minister in initiative called, ‘Hum Fit Toh India Fit’, started by Sports Minister Rajavardhan Singh Rathore, who posted a short video of himself doing push-ups. Kohli had posted a video of his gym training and tagged his actor wife Anushka Sharma, former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Modi.
“Challenge accepted, Virat! I will be sharing my own #FitnessChallenge video soon,” Modi tweeted from his personal handle. However, ‘Modi’s acceptance’ also quickly took political overtones as a host of opposition leaders dared him to tackle challenges of unemployment and security. Congress chief Rahul Gandhi led the charge by asking him to reduce oil prices or face a nationwide agitation.
Speaking in today’s edition of Mann Ki Baat, Modi talked about Kohli’s fitness challenge. Modi told the nation that he had mentioned ‘Fit India’ a couple of months ago. “I did not think it would draw such a good response; that a large number of people would come forward to support it,” Modi said. “When I say ‘Fit India’, I believe that the more we play, the more we will inspire the country to come out and play,” Modi said.
The prime minister expressed happiness on people sharing videos of Fitness Challenge on social media and tagging each other to spread the challenge. “Everybody is now getting connected with this Fit India Campaign. People from the film fraternity, from the world of Sports, common citizens of the country, members of the armed forces, school teachers or even those toiling in fields and farms, their rising notes are building up a crescendo ‘Hum Fit toh India Fit’… ‘If we are fit, India is fit’,” the prime minister said.
Mentioning Virat Kohli, Modi said, “for me, it’s heartwarming that the captain of the Indian Cricket team Virat Kohli ji has included me in his challenge”
“… and I too have accepted his challenge. I believe this is gainful and this kind of a challenge will inspire us to be fit along with others, as well,” he added.