PV Sindhu 'belongs to India', says coach Pullela Gopichand

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Hyderabad, Aug 22: PV Sindhu is being claimed by both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana as their own, but the Olympic silver medallist's mentor Pullela Gopichand today (August 22) said that "she belongs" to India.

When a reporter sought Sindhu's views on the bragging rights, Gopichand jumped in to try and put an end to the regional controversy by simply stating, "Well, I can only say she (Sindhu) belongs to India." (Photos: Sindhu felicitated)

Gopichand (left) and Sindhu in Hyderabad on Monday after returning home from Rio Olympics. Sindhu shows her silver medal to the fans who had gathered to welcome her

Gopichand said it's great that various governments are praising and supporting her. "We should celebrate the fact that all of them (states) want to be part of the celebration and support us." (Who is Sindhu?)

Telangana government today accorded a rousing reception and felicitated Sindhu and Gopichand at Gachibowli Stadium after their arrival from Rio. Andhra Pradesh government also has plans to honour them in a grand way.

Significantly, when Sindhu and Gopichand landed at the Rajiv Gandhi International airport, some ministers from both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh were present to welcome her.

At the felicitation event at the stadium, Telangana Deputy Chief Minister Mohammed Mahamood Ali described Sindhu as "Telangana's pride", while Home Minister N Narasimha Reddy called her "Telangana Ammayi (girl)".

"Because of our Sidhu, Telangana's name shone in the entire world", Ali said.

Andhra Pradesh government had announced a cash reward of Rs three crore after she won the silver medal at Rio on Saturday. However, within hours Telangana government went a step ahead and decided to give her Rs five crore.

PTI

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