Four Indigenous Games Approved For Khelo India Youth Games

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New Delhi: Four indigenous sports have been approved for inclusion in Khelo India Youth Games 2021, scheduled to be held in Haryana.

These are Gatka, Kalaripayattu, Thang-Ta and Mallakhamba.

“India has a rich heritage of indigenous sports, and it is a priority for the sports ministry to preserve, promote and popularise these games. There is no better platform than the Khelo India Games where athletes of these games can compete,” said Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju.

“I am confident that in the 2021 Khelo India Youth Games these four disciplines, along with yogasana, will get their much deserved attention among sports enthusiasts and youth of the country. In the coming years we will be able to add more indigenous sports at the Khelo Games,” Rijiju added.

Kalaripayattu originated in Kerala, with Bollywood actor Vidyut Jammwal being one of the high-profile practitioners, repoirted The Indian Express.

Mallakhamba is practised in several parts of the country, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra being the ‘hotspots’ of this sport.

Gatka, on the other hand, originated in Punjab. It’s the Nihang Sikh warriors’ way of fighting, used as self-defence and also practised as a sport.

Thang-Ta is a Manipuri martial art form which was gradually losing popularity. The government’s decision to promote it will help revive it.

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