Khelo India Winter Games 2024

SRINAGAR — Union Minister of State for the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Nitish Pramanik said the Centre was making every effort to transform Jammu and Kashmir into a sporting state.

On the inaugural day of the Khelo India Khelo Winter Games 2024, Pramanik highlighted the government’s dedication to providing extensive support and resources to nurture sporting excellence in the region.

“Every effort is being made to make Jammu and Kashmir a sporting nation. Sports and infrastructure development is being prioritised so that athletes get facilities to make a mark in their respective fields,” he said.

The union minister said the government’s efforts towards sports development in Jammu and Kashmir become evident with the Centre’s budgetary allocation for Jammu and Kashmir’s sports sector.

“We all witnessed how the development of Jammu and Kashmir took place after Article 370 abrogation. Jammu and Kashmir’s sports budget is much more than many bigger states of India. It shows how bright the future is going to be for Jammu and Kashmir. The Centre is taking various measures for the development of the union territory,” he told reporters as per the news agency KNO.

Pramanik said Kashmir is replacing Switzerland as a winter sports destination. “There was a time when athletes used to go to Switzerland for winter sports. Now, we have seen that athletes from Switzerland are coming here for winter sports. I saw even in this bone-chilling cold weather, people are coming for Khelo India event which shows the sporting spirit in India,” he said.

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The minister outlined various initiatives and programs tailored to promote sports at all levels.

The fourth edition of Khelo India Winter Games festival started on Wednesday at Gulmarg. Athletes from different parts of the country took part in several winter games during the event including Snowboarding, Snow Mountaineering, Nordic Skiing, and Alpine Skiing.

The Khelo India Winter Games 2024 event is being organized by the Department of Youth Services & Sports, J&K Sports Council in collaboration with the Tourism Department, Gulmarg Development Authority and several other stakeholders.

The first part of Khelo India Winter Games Festival 2024 took place from 2 to 6 February in Leh, and it mainly included games like Ice Hockey & Ice Skating.

Speaking on the occasion, J&K Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha said that it is a momentous occasion for more than 600 athletes who have been preparing for this spectacular event.

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He invited the athletes, team officials and sports enthusiasts to enjoy the warm hospitality of Jammu and Kashmir, enjoy the thrill of Alpine Ski, Nordic Ski, and Snow Mountaineering competitions and also enjoy the incredible sights and cuisine of the paradise on earth.

“The 4th Khelo India Winter Games, over the next four days, will honour the hard work, skills, dedication and sporting excellence on ski slope and I am confident it will renew the spirit of brotherhood, peace and harmony among all the teams,” the Lt Governor said.

At the inaugural ceremony, the Lt Governor highlighted the efforts of the government to promote robust sports culture in cities and villages of the Union Territory.

“Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a new era of sports has emerged in Jammu Kashmir. Renewed thrust on state-of-the-art infrastructure and allied facilities has given a huge impetus to the sports sector,” the LG said.

“Our talented sportspersons have proved their mettle in national and international sports events. Their achievements are inspiring the budding athletes to bring laurels to the UT and the nation,” he said.

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