Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)- The 8th Bangladesh Games, the biggest domestic extravaganza of the country, begins on Saturday through a colourful opening ceremony at the country’s premier venue Bangabandhu National Stadium (BNS) in Dhaka.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is formally expected to inaugurate the meet as the chief guest. 
State-owned Bangladesh Television will telecast live the opening ceremony. 
Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA), the organiser of the games, already completed all the preparations to host the mega event a success.
Some 12,570 general spectators will get the opportunity to enjoy the gala opening ceremony at the 25,570-seat capacity at BNS free of ticket. The gate of the stadium will open for the spectators at 4:00 pm. 
The estimated BDT 80 million gala opening ceremony will have two eye-catching sections of lighting the torch and a thematic cultural show that will include numerous aspects like rural life in Bangladesh, the liberation war, sporting effect on the society.
Shankar Shahjalal will lead the thematic cultural show with the participation of 600 artistes, music and laser lights. 
The other dazzling section is set to be the lighting of the torch by noted former national hockey player Jummon Lusai. Lusai will light the torch by standing in the middle of the Bangabandhu National Stadium and aiming through a laser. Once the torch is lit, it will turn into a fountain of light with the help of the laser for a few minutes. 
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will enter the stadium at 7:00 pm. State Minister for Youth and Sports M Ahad Ali Sarkar and an 8 to 10 members delegation of Army, including Army Chief General Iqbal Karim Bhuiyan will welcome the premier.
Over four and a half hours gala opening ceremony will conclude with massive fireworks. 
This time the theme of Bangladesh Games is “Sports in our heart,” while the mascot of the games is “Squirrel,” the symbol of agility and speed. 
In the 8th Bangladesh Games a total of 6855 athletes from 31 disciplines will fight for 2243 medals (gold-699, silver- 699 and bronze-845) in 356 events.
BBN/SSR/AD-20Apr13-3:19 pm (BST)