Jammu: Secretary Youth Services and Sports (YSS), Sarmad Hafeez, on Thursday chaired the preliminary meeting of 4th Khelo India Winter Games, scheduled to be held in Gulmarg next year, held at Jammu.
The meeting was attended by the officers from J&K and Sports Authority of India team. While the J&K team was led by Sarmad Hafeez; Ekta Vishnoi, Deputy Director General Sports Authority of India led the SAI team.
Sarmad Hafeez highlighted the role of Khelo India Winter Games in recognizing Gulmarg as one of the main winter sports destinations globally.
Sarmad Hafeez said that the achievements of the J&K athletes speak volumes about the region’s commitment towards promoting and excelling in sports. He also directed all the concerned to complete the tasks adhering strictly to the timelines and ensure that all the facilities put in place during the Khelo India Winter Games meet international standards. He also asked that the promotional campaign of the Winter Games be stepped up to generate enthusiasm among sports lovers.
Ekta Vishnoi, Deputy Director General SAI, while speaking on the occasion, said that it is an occasion to celebrate sporting excellence and the spirit of camaraderie among sportspersons and an opportunity to showcase J&K’s culture and warm hospitality to the people from the other parts of the country.
Secretary J&K Sports Council, Nuzhat Gull, apprised the Sai team that J&K is ranked number one in the country for sports initiatives held under Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav and briefed about the role sports has played in channelizing the energy of youth of J&K for the greater good.
Today’s meeting came as a prelude to the comprehensive strategy for traffic management, sanitation, water supply, accommodation, transportation, etc of the participants during their stay in the Gulmarg where the event is being held.
Deputy Directors, Sibananda Mishra and Sachin from Sports Authority of India informed that this edition of Khelo India Winter Games is expecting around 800 participations of players and officials, dignitaries, and media persons from across the country as the venue is being prepared to host the snow-related events only. The competitions in Nordic Ski, Ski Mountaineering, Alpine Skiing, Snow Boarding are being held, while the Ice related events like Ice Hockey, Ice Skating etc would be held in Ladakh.
It was also informed that for the first time during the past few years, SAI of India has registered the athletes on their portal and they will work in close coordination with the J&K Sports Council.
The deployment of experts and the assistance and support required from various coordinating departments and organizations to make the event a grand success were also discussed by the participants.
Among others present in the meeting included Kapil Sharma, Special Secretary YSS; Subash Chander Chibber, Director YSS; Dr. Zafar Iqbal CAO; Mohamad Hanief, Chief Sports Officer; Muzaffar Hussain, Divisional Sports Officer Kashmir; Baljinder Pal Singh Divisional Sports officer Jammu; Sahil Gupta and Lalita Sharma, Executive Director; GTCC Chairperson; Amar Jyoti, Director, Khelo India; Manoj Awati, Assistant Director, SAI, Akash Mishra, Consultant, SAI.
The number of officials from state administration including the Director Health Services Kashmir, Dr. Mushtaq Ahmad Rather; CEO Gulmarg Development Authority, Waseem Raja; SSP Security Faisal Qayoom; SSP Rural Traffic Kashmir, Ravinder Pal Singh; Regional Transport Officer Kashmir, Syed Shahnawaz Bukhari; Joint Director YSS, Waseem Raja; SDM Gulmarg, Altaf Musavi and other officers and officials attended the meeting through online mode from Srinagar.
The 4th edition of the Khelo India Winter Games is slated for the first week of February, next year.