Who then passed it to Sports Minister M.S. Gill? Finally, it ended up in the hands of Suresh Ivalmadi, Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the Delhi Games, who set the Baton Relay rolling by handing it over to bearer Ahbinav Bindra, India’s only Olympic gold medalist, and the first of the 11 sports persons including Kapil Dev and Sania Mirza-who took turns to carry the Baton around Victoria Memorial.
Others sports persons were Olympic medalist Vijender Kumar and Sushil Kumar, Milkha Singh, Gurbachan Singh Randhawa, Prakash Padukone, Karnam Malleswari, Misha Grewal and Dilip Tirkey. Ms. Patil is the first head of state to receive the Baton from the Queen.
The Relay, signaling the formal countdown for the Delhi Games, would pass through all the commonwealth countries during its 240-day journey, before concluding at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, New Delhi for the opening of the Games on October 3, 2010.
The Baton which is fitted with sensors to detect and monitor the runner’s pulse, has the Queen’s message engraved onto a miniature 18-carat gold leaf symbolizing the ancient India Palm leaf patras.
The Baton is capable of lighting up the flag colors of all the 70 countries it passes through. The Light Emitting Diodes (LED) embedded in the baton will transform into the colors of country’s flag in which the Baton arrives. The baton weighting 1900 grams is powered by a nine-volt rechargeable battery that can run up to eight hours.
Athletes carrying the Baton can also record their messages and images and sounds to the blue tooth enabled Baton. It will be relayed to base station in the accompanying vehicle and to the Commonwealth Games website.
The location of the baton can also be tracked throughout its journey the Global Positioning System (GPS) embedded in it. The Relay will cover, 1, 70,000 km around the world in 240 days and in India it will cover 20,000 km in 100 days. Reach India on June 25, 2010.
The Relay, signaling the formal countdown for the Delhi Games, would pass through all the commonwealth countries during its 240-day journey, before concluding at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium for the opening of the Games on October 3, 2010.