The 28th ‘Aidex 2017’ Annual Sports Festival for users of Jaipur Limbs, organised by the Colombo Friend in – Need Society was held at Prisons Grounds, Colombo 8 yesterday.

M.R.M. Rishad and P.M. Harshani Kumari Pathiraja won the Best Male and Female Athlete awards respectively. In the under 15 age group category, M.G.S. Manoj Rathnayake won the boys Best Athlete trophy while the girls trophy was won by J.M. Ayodya Dananjanee. Over 55 Overall Best Athlete award was bagged by L.P. Anthoney who participated in Male putt shot (below/above knee) event. Last year’s Best Athlete (Forces) category winner M. Sunil Mallawaarachchi who participated in the cycle race (1km) (above knee) retained the title this year too.

This year’s Aidex Sports Festival saw around 400 participants from across the island participating in events and the annual sports festival is considered most anticipated sporting event among the disabled sports fraternity. The event is a moral booster for disabled athletes and gives them the opportunity to overcome their disabilities and regain confidence in their own resourcefulness. The participants included members of the Armed Forces and civilians who have undergone amputation of limbs following conflict, traffic accidents, infections especially in diabetic patients and children with limb defects.

The event commenced at 9.00 a.m. with the male and female bicycle races followed by 63 track and field events including 100, 200 and 400 metre races, putt shot, long jump and archery.

The AIDEX Annual Sports Festival is sponsored by Dilmah, from its inception to help such individuals realise their potential and to encourage them to live non-dependent lives with dignity. In addition to the sponsorship, Dilmah also makes special grants to individuals by providing employment opportunities helping empower them to become more productive citizens of the community.

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