Prime Minister Narendra Modi opened the FIDE 44th Chess Olympiad in Chennai on Thursday and said it is the best time to encourag sport in India.
'It is important to promote sporting talent and build infrastructure to help sport grow in the country," Modi said.
Earlier, Modi was accorded a warm welcome with performances by musicians and percussionists all along the route he took by road to reach the venue, the Nehru stadium. Modi sported a shawl with a chessboard designed border.
BJP's Tamil Nadu unit's art and culture wing organised music and traditional dances to welcome Modi. Petals were showered on Modi's car by enthusiastic supporters, who gathered on both sides of the road while he was on his way to the stadium from INS Adyar. The Prime Minister took a chopper from the airport to reach the Naval helipad near the Marina beach. 'Vanakkam Modi' trended on Twitter here.