Neten Dorji | Merak

Leki Tshering, 10, likes to watch boxing on television. He is a big fan of the sport but he never had an opportunity to box.

As Merak observed the International Olympic Day on March 6, Leki had a wonderful surprise. A chance to don the gloves and show his moves in the ring.

Once the bell rang, he threw his punches sending the crowd into a frenzy.

The Bhutan Olympic Committee marked the International Olympic Day this year with the community of Merak in Trashigang.

More than a thousand people gathered at Merak Primary School ground to celebrate the day. The theme this year was ‘Climate Change and Sustainability’.

“As my school is located in a remote area I didn’t have the opportunity to play this game but today, I could,” said Leki Tshering. “I am happy to learn boxing.”

Some 300 students and volunteers from Trashigang dzongkhag took part in the celebration. Two officials from National Boxing Federation and volunteers affiliated with BOC organised several drills and activities for the participants. Children as young as four participated.

The main objective of the Olympic Day is to create awareness of the modern Olympic games and introduce the games.

“Most of the sports events and programmes are in towns so we brought this event to Merak,” said the official.

According to officials, Olympic Day falls on June 23 but it was moved forward to avoid inconveniences caused by the monsoon.

BOC assigned sports equipment to Merak Primary School so that sports enthusiasts could continue the Olympic sports that were introduced during the celebration.

Besides introducing the games, the BOC official advocated the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect through the games. 

“We hope this event has disseminated the core values – establishing peace and friendship through sports.”

His Royal Highness Prince Jigyel Ugyen Wangchuck and officials from Trashigang dzongkhag also participated in the event.