Ahead of the 1964 Tokyo Games, the Olympic torch toured 11 cities in Asia, passing through the hands of hundreds of runners. NHK World spoke to seven people who took part in the relay about their personal experiences and what the occasion meant for their homes.
Japan is gearing up to stage the postponed Olympic torch relay, but this year’s event won’t be anything like the spectacle seen 57 years ago when Tokyo first hosted the Games.
An Olympian and 1964 torchbearer recalls how different the Games were for Indians back then.
When Tokyo first hosted the Olympic Games 57 years ago, the flame travelled across Asia, including Thailand. The first runner in Bangkok was a national athletic champion whose career was disrupted by the Cold War.
Legendary Malaysian sprinter Jegathesan Manikavasagam looks back on when he carried the Olympic torch into Kuala Lumpur’s Merdeka Stadium ahead of the 1964 Tokyo Games, an event he says helped unite his young country.
The city of Manila was still recovering from the ravages of World War Two when the Olympic flame for the 1964 Tokyo Games passed through its streets, marking a step on the path to healing.
As the Olympic flame made its way to Tokyo for the 1964 Olympics, it stopped in Hong Kong where runners battled typhoon winds to drum up enthusiasm and sport.
The people of Taiwan beamed with pride as the Olympic flame passed through ahead of the 1964 Tokyo Games, but one torchbearer fears it may never return.