SRINAGAR: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will virtually inaugurate the second edition of Khelo India Winter Games at Gulmarg on Friday. Around 1200 athletes from 27 states and Union Territories will participate in different categories of sports at the three-day event on the snow-bound slopes of J&K’s popular winter destination.
Organised by the Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports in collaboration with J&K Sports Council and J&K Winter Games Association, the mega event — to be held from February 26-March 2 — is one of several efforts aimed to engage Kashmiri youth in positive, constructive activities, which include snowshoe racing, ice skating, ice hockey, skiing, Nordic skiing, snowboarding, ski mountaineering, etc., Council secretary Nuzhat Gul said.
Athletes from the Army and Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering and Winter Sports will also participate in the Games, Gul added. Numerous cultural programmes will also be organised at the event, which will also showcase a plethora of ethnic food and local crafts.
MoS youth affairs and sports, and other top dignitaries of the central government and Sports Authority of India will be physically present during the e-inauguration. J&K lieutenant governor Manoj Sinha may also attend the occasion, said sources.
The J&K administration has directed a special team of doctors and ambulances to be available round-the-clock. Besides, a special team of the State Disaster Response Force shall remain stationed at the venue for relief and rescue operations in case of an emergency.
Meanwhile, LG Manoj Sinha on Tuesday evening visited Dal Lake where he interacted with several tourists from across the country. He asked them about their experience in Kashmir, and said, “Be the goodwill ambassadors of J&K and carry the message to your respective areas that the UT is an ideal and safe tourist destination.”