New Delhi: Olympian Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore was on Sunday named Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Youth Affairs and Sports in the Narendra Modi government’s cabinet reshuffle.
Rathore, who replaced Vijay Goel, became the first sportsman to take charge of the sports ministry. Goel held the post from July 2016.
Rathore won a silver medal in the 2004 Athens Olympic Games in double trap shooting event. In a career spanning over a decade, he also won multiple medals at the Commonwealth and Asian Games. He was awarded the Padma Shri in 2005.
With sports being a strong focus in the Modi government, Rathore, who won 10 gold medals in international events, garners the respect and support of the sportspersons across the nation.
His experience will play a huge role as India look to improve their medal haul in 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The news of Rathore’s appointment was welcomed on Twitter.
Delighted to see @Ra_THORe is the new sports minister . All the very very best !
— Abhinav Bindra (@Abhinav_Bindra) September 3, 2017
— Mary Kom (@MangteC) September 3, 2017