Khelo India Winter Games 2024 Begin In Gulmarg As 800 Athletes Battle It Out

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Khelo India Winter Games 2024 Begin In Gulmarg As 800 Athletes Battle It Out

The fourth edition of the Khelo India Winter Games began in Gulmarg today, with 800 athletes from across the country participating in various winter sports. LG Manoj Sinha inaugurated the games in a colorful program. The famous winter ski destination Gulmarg in the Kashmir valley is once again buzzing with the start of the fourth edition of Khelo India. Approximately 800 athletes, officials, and international players are participating in various winter sporting events, including snowboarding, alpine skiing, Nordic skiing, and snow mountaineering.

Gulmarg, which is called the crown of Kashmir, is counted among the best ski destinations in the world, and till now Gulmarg has produced many international players for the country who have participated in various international competitions apart from the Olympics and have brought glory to the country. Talking about Gulmarg, this place is always known for its best snow powder and wild alpine ski slopes.

International skier Sandy Rigzin says there is no better place than Gulmarg for winter sports. The slopes and powder here are very famous, and many international players have emerged from here. The government is doing a lot. If a little more work is done, then international sports competitions can be held here.

In the last two months, the athletes, administration, and other local people were disappointed due to the lack of snow. Even the Khelo India Games, which were scheduled for 4th February, were postponed, but in February, nature was kind, and Kashmir witnessed heavy snowfall. Five feet of snow accumulated in Gulmarg, and then the administration kick-started the games.

Heera Lal, Nordic Coach, said, “This time it’s a better-organized event and is going very well; there is no problem with anyone. We are lucky it snowed.”

Twenty states and union territories are competing in alpine skiing, Nordic skiing, and snowboarding, while ten states are competing in ski mountaineering competitions. Organizing these games provides a platform for players to showcase their skills and prove their mettle at the national and international levels.

Athlete Mohammad Riazuddin said, “We are lucky that there was snow, and this competition was held; otherwise, everyone was disappointed due to the lack of snow.”

Narbu, an athlete, believes that this platform is very beneficial, and here we can show our skills and progress to the national and international levels. “There is a lot of talent among the players here, and Gulmarg is such a place where, if a little more attention is given, we can host international championships here.”

The event, organized by the Department of Youth Services and Sports and Jammu and Kashmir Sports Council in collaboration with the Department of Tourism, Gulmarg Development Authority, and other stakeholder departments. Due to the tireless efforts of the Union Sports Ministry and the UT Government, international level competitions are being organized in this fourth edition. The department is trying to organize international level championships here, for which efforts are underway.

Sarmad Hafeez, Secretary of the Youth Sports Department, said, “This time we have made better arrangements; we have organized these games on the lines of international level competitions, and efforts are also underway to organize an international championship in Gulmarg where there is a lot of potential.”

Today, these games were inaugurated by the LG of Jammu and Kashmir. The fourth edition of Khelo India Winter Games follows the pattern of Khelo India Games organized in other parts of the country and will run for five days. This event not only promotes the local culture, cuisine, and sports persons but also boosts winter tourism in Jammu and Kashmir.

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