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India plans to host Brics Games alongside Khelo 2021 youth tournament

National flags of five BRICS countries (Photo by Vishal Bhatnagar/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

India will host the multi-sport Brics Games next year alongside the Khelo India Games, its annual youth sports competition, India’s Sports Minister has confirmed.

The announcement by Kiren Rijiju came after he attended a meeting of Sports Ministers from the Brics nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) earlier this week. India will take up the chairmanship of the five-nation independent international group in 2021.

“Brics Games 2021 will be held during same time and at same venues as of Khelo India Games 2021 so that our players from various parts of the country who will gather for Khelo India Games will have the benefit of witnessing Brics Games from close quarters,” Rijiju said.

The Brics Games were formed at the 8th Brics Summit held in Goa, India in 2016 with the first edition of the Games held in Guangzhou, China the following year.

India is keen to match its growing economic power with a higher sporting profile and has submitted bids for a number of upcoming events.

Earlier this year Indian Olympic Association president Narinder Batra said the country will step up its efforts to host the 2032 Olympic Games and other international events when the Covid-19 pandemic eases.

The IOA officially submitted a letter of interest to the IOC of its intention to bid for the 2032 Olympics in December 2018.

India has also tendered bid documents to host the AFC Asian Cup in 2027. If the country succeeds, it would be the biggest football tournament it has ever hosted.