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'Pride of Punjab Fauja Singh wows fans during Amritsar city's first marathon

Amritsar, Mon, 23 Jan 2012 ANI

Amritsar, Jan.23 (ANI): Centenarian Fauja Singh, who is widely regarded as the "Pride of Punjab" because of his age-defying marathon stints, wowed school children and senior citizens here on Sunday be taking part in Amritsar City's first ever 'Run for the City' and 'Citizen Walk'.


The two events were organised with the objective of creating awareness about Amritsar and its religious, cultural, historical and heritage importance, besides itsotential as a tourist destination.


The 100-year old Fauja Singh led enthusiastic civil society members, representatives of non-government organisations, educational institutions, corporate houses and servicemen in the program.


Speaking on the ocassion, Fauja Singh urged the youth to shun drugs, eat healthy food and excercise daily to stay fit and fine.


The marathon took a round of the Golden Temple complex in the walled city.


Gunbir Singh, Chairperson, World Wide Fund (WWF) for Nature, who is heading the Amritsar Tourism Outreach (ATO) that organized the run, said Fauja Singh was the right person to lead the race that showcased the city of Amritsar and called upon its citizens to help keep the city clean, green and safe.


He said Amritsar attracts thousands of devotees, pilgrims and tourists daily, but most were disappointed with the poor tourism infrastructure.


"We want to create an awareness and a sense of belonging amongst the residents. We are planning this holistic, annual activity for augmenting the tourism potential of the holy city,'' he said.


Singh further said that a series of programs were being planned for this whole 'Marathon Year' and Amritsar Tourism Outreach intended to involve the general public in the run.


The winners of the run were awarded honours and certificates.


Amritsar's Deputy Commissioner Rajat Aggarwal and Municipal Corporation Commissioner Dharampal Gupta were present on the ocassion.


Representatives of Bhatia Hospital held up banners that warned against the rising menace of drug addiction in Punjab.


Dr. R.P.S. Bhatia said the program not only highlighed the tourism potential of Amritsar,but also instilled a sense of pride and responsibility for the city's cleanliness and development.


"This program will bring the city on the global sporting map and will cerate issue-based social awareness too," said Gunbir Singh. By Ravinder Singh Robin (ANI)


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