JK News Today

Srinagar, February 26:

The second edition of Khelo India Winter Games at world renowned ski resort Gulmarg was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the sports meet virtually.

Union Minister of Youth Affairs & Sports Shri Kiren Rijiju was present during the ceremony at Golf Club, Gulmarg along with Shri Manoj Sinha, Lt. Governor, J&K, and a host of other dignitaries.

In his inaugural address , PM said the second edition of Khelo India-Winter Games starting from today is a “ major step towards making Jammu and Kashmir a major hub with India’s effective presence in the Winter Games.”

He conveyed his best wishes to the players of Jammu and Kashmir and all the players from all over the country. He remarked that the number of players participating in this winter games from various states have doubled which demonstrates the increasing enthusiasm towards Winter Games. He said the experience from this winter games would help the players while participating in winter Olympics. He said the “winter games in Jammu & Kashmir would help in developing a new sporting ecosystem.”

Modi said that it will instill new spirit and enthusiasm in the tourism sector in Jammu & Kashmir and emphasized “sports has become an area in which countries of the world project their soft power.”

The Prime Minister said that sports have a global dimension and this vision has been guiding the recent reforms in the sports ecosystem. There is a holistic approach from the Khelo India Campaign to Olympic Podium stadium. Hand holding of sports professionals is being done from recognition of talent at grassroot level to bringing them to the highest global platform. From talent recognition to team selection, transparency is the government’s priority. Dignity of sportspeople, and recognition of their contribution is being ensured, said the Prime Minister.”

Manoj Sinha Lt. Governor, J&K, thanked the sports department for the smooth conduct of the launch event, and said, “We want to give the message of unity, love, empowerment and peace through the games in the beautiful valley of Gulmarg. We are ranked 14 in winter sports destination in the world but with the support of our PM, Rijiju, the Central government, the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, the UT sports dept and sports council and especially, the energy of the youth, J&K will get in the top 5.”

The second edition of the Games will see a participation of over 1200 people, including 600 athletes across 27 States and Union Territories. The participation list of athletes also includes the Indian Army and the Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering and Winter Sports. The various sports disciplines include Sprint, Speed Skating, Ice Hockey, Figure Skating, Ice Stock, Giant Slalom, Snow Boarding, Vertical Race, Cross Country, Snowshoe, Long distance running, Ski Mountaineering, Skiing and Nordic Ski.