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Devbrat Patnaik

Bhubaneswar: The world is here and the hockey craze at its zenith. The iconic Kalinga Stadium this evening dipped in vibrant colours after the grand opening ceremony of the Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup kicked off with a laser show with drones and fire crackers adding to the electrifying atmosphere.

No sooner than the chief Minister Naveen Patnaik declared Odisha Men's Hockey World Cup 2018 open, the crowd witnessed a vibrant drone show with the Hockey anthem 'Jai Hind Hind, Jai India' being played in the background.

"I welcome all the international hockey teams, the distinguished delegates and the hockey officials to Odisha. You are the guests of 45 million Odia people," said the Chief Minister.

Every fan's heart skipped a bit when the King of Bollywood Shah Rukh Khan greeted the people of Odisha in Odia saying, "Apana Mananku Bahut Bahut Dhanyabad, Mate Eithi Asibaku Sujog Deithibaru."

SRK further said he feels proud to be here in Odisha, more so because his father was a hockey player. And he said he learnt a lot from his father because of which he also captained a hockey team when he was 18.

"Hockey is India's Sport and we can say Hockey is ours," said SRK. No doubt Shah Rukh's Heart Beats for Hockey as he even had played a coach in Bollywood movie 'Chak De India'.

Next came the most gifted performer of Indian cinema Madhuri Dixit with an 'Earth-themed' performance, a fusion performance showcasing eastern and western classical dances which was accompanied by around 800 students from various schools and colleges.

AR Rahman, the global musical icon, enthralled the audience as he began with the title of Dil Se. He was joined by Jonita Gandhi for 'Dil Hai Chota Sa'. Rahman was accompanied by many renowned musicians and the troupe performed many hit songs including the Vande Mataram song he had created back in the year 1997.

The event concluded with Gulzar's Hockey World Cup anthem 'Jai Hind Hind, Jai India'.

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