As the Tokyo Olympics edge nearer, citizens prepare to cheer for Team India at the games with social media posts, online activities and more.
With a few days to go for the Tokyo Olympics 2021 to finally begin, the Indian government is trying its best to support the 127-strong Indian contingent (Team India) making its way to Japan. They have kick-started an elaborate campaign called #Cheer4India with a two-pronged approach: motivating athletes and encouraging citizens to do the same. Spear-headed by Prime Minister Modi, the efforts include audio-visual content being shared by several ministers with blue-tick accounts on Twitter.
Mini websites have also been created where activities are listed, giving people options to choose from in their endeavours to support Indian athletes; and to generate downloadable wish cards that can be shared by enthusiastic citizens on social media.
People can make videos, share wishes, participate in quizzes and write slogans to show their support to the Olympic athletes and #Cheer4India. Prime Minister Modi tweeted several videos of his interactions with the Tokyo-bound contingent. The stories of hard work and the journey to success of various Indian athletes were highlighted in these conversations. #OlympicsKiAasha is another prominent hashtag being used to club together such tweets.
Highlights of conversations between prominent government body heads and the athletes who are also government employees are also being shared on social media. Their wishes are being amplified in an attempt to showcase and nudge citizens to follow suit.
Hindustani Way, a song by A.R. Rahman and Ananya Birla has also been released to help people cheer for the team. It is being shared on social media by fans as well as government representatives.
The representative athletes are also documenting their journey online, which is being amplified by official government body handles such as Khelo India and the Sports Authority of India.
Bollywood celebrity Anil Kapoor could also be seen doing his bit to cheer for the contingent.
The Boxing Federation (#RingKeBaazigar) and the Badminton Association of India (#SmashForTheGlory) are also using their own hashtags to share, document, and promote the activities of their athletes. Some of these posts also draw from popular references to add a motivational aspect to the narrative.
A lot of content is being created and disseminated as documentation of this historic event, especially if one were to look at it as one of the first major sporting events in the post-pandemic world. While these efforts do spill over to other social media platforms, given the network and reach of government handles on Twitter and nature, ease of tracking conversations and possibilities on the platform, they are most prominent here. With still a few more days to go and a fortnight of excitement in tow, these efforts are only bound to grow.