The presence of Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi made the sporting environment more exciting and colourful at the KD Yadav Wrestling Stadium in the Indira Gandhi Sports Complex in New Delhi today.
Rahul, 40, had come here to watch the freestyle wrestling bouts of 60 kg and 74 kg categories and his presence boosted the morale of the Indian grapplers. Clad in white kurta-pyjama, Rahul spent nearly an hour at the venue.
Security officials had a real tough time as Rahul breached all security cordons and preferred to sit in a row of one of the spectator galleries in place of the VIP block. He had become the main centre of attraction not only among the spectators but also among the officials and volunteers.
There was a streak of enthusiasm running amidst the spectators who were virtually enthralled with the surprise visit of the Gandhi scion. Majority of the spectators gave a standing ovation to him upon his arrival.
"Rahul Gandhi is a youth icon and it is a dream come true that I have shaken hands with him. He is so down to earth and sat amidst us in the general stand. We really want more such politicians in our country," Deepika Gaekwad, an engineering student of Delhi, said.
On seeing Rahul, many people thronged towards his stand and took autographs. There were some lucky ones who managed to click photographs with him.
"We were totally surprised when we saw Rahul Gandhi sitting in the general stand. We salute his gesture," said Kamleshwar Singh, a spectator.
Not only Rahul but Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda also took a seat among the spectators.
Wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt, who won the gold in the freestyle 60 kg category, also went to meet Rahul after winning his final bout.
"Presence of Rahul Gandhi and Haryana chief minister among the spectators added to my energy. I really wanted to give my best performance before Rahul Gandhi and I thank god that I was able to do that," Dutt said.
Before coming to the wrestling venue, Rahul had gone to Talkatora Stadium to watch the boxing quarterfinal matches.
According to a volunteer in the stadium, Rahul bought the ticket for the match.