While the Games have begun and 81 athletes in London are carrying India’s hopes, music director Shantanu Moitra, with lyricist Swanand Kirkire, has come up with a morale-boosting Olympics theme song, ‘It’s time to cheer.’ This song, an initiative of Google India, urges every Indian citizen to support and salute our sporting heroes in their quest for gold, silver and bronze medals at the Olympics.
“The song is currently streaming live on YouTube. It will also play on the Google YouTube bus as it journeys into the interiors of Punjab and Haryana, spreading the cheer in remote villages and towns that are the origins of some Indian sportspersons who have risen to fame. This bus will not only give their families a chance to catch the sporting action in London, live on TV, but also to chat with their family member who represents the country there,” explains Shantanu.
The composer of the hit Munnabhai series and 3 Idiots loved Google’s idea and was touched by the sentiment behind it. He took about 10 days to come up with the three-minute anthem which was launched at Delhi’s Talkatora Stadium, last week. “World Champion shooter Anjali Bhagat admits that it would have been a great boost if they’d had a song like this when she was at the Olympics,” says Shantanu.
The video, with no cricket or movie star endorsing it, begins in the hinterlands and charts the journey of different sports through their icons. Sung by Joy Barua, Rajdeep and Monali Thakur, its message is, ‘Aap agar saath hain to jeet saath hai…’ (If you are with us, then victory is with us too). But Shantanu points out that whether out athletes bring home a medal or not, they’re all winners already. Battling innumerable odds to qualify for the games is a victory in itself.
“I’ve been to Manipur, which where MC Mary Kom, India’s No 1 female boxer, comes from. It is incredible how this mother of two, trained in a state that suffers from a gun-toting army and has most average of facilities, today hopes to be a world champion again. That for me is an Olympian triumph,” says Shantanu.
We wonder why Doordarshan doesn’t air the song on its Olympics segments to spread the cheer. It’s a perfect salute to our oft-unsung heroes!