‘Breaking barriers, winter sports gaining popularity across India’

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Representational Image File/ GK

Srinagar: Winter sports are breaking down barriers and becoming a national movement in India, according to Olympic legend Shiva Keshavan of India.

Keshavan, a special visitor at the third Khelo India National Winter Games in Gulmarg, has represented India six times at the Olympics and was the first Indian to compete in the sport of luge there. He is presently a member of the committee set up by the Union Sports Ministry to promote winter sports and is regarded as a legend in Indian winter sports.

While enjoying the colourful atmosphere during the Khelo India National Winter Games at Gulmarg, Keshavan said that Government should be hailed for popularising winter sports in the country.

“I am personally too happy to see such an atmosphere during the winter games. I always dreamt about it and it is truly turning into reality now,” Shiva said.  Around 1500 athletes representing 29 States, Union territories and other Institutional teams participated in the 3rd edition of the Games in Gulmarg.

“Important thing is that in this Khelo India Games, there are participants and teams from all over India. Those who were thinking that Wintersport has no following, no athletes in India, have to change their thoughts,” the Olympic legend said.

For Shiva Keshavan seeing winter sports getting popular and having such huge gatherings is personal dream come true moment.

“When I started winter sports, it had very little following in India. Only athletes from certain places used to compete and had to endure a lot to even do that. Now all that is changing and these games are making winter games popular. The wintersport in India is now turning into a true pan India sport and for me, it is dream come true,” he said.

Keshavan who is a member of the Union Ministry to develop a wintersport in the Country said that he will try to give his input and help Government to take this sport to other parts of the Country.

“Government is serious and committed in the promotion of wintersport. They want to develop other wintersport destinations as well and don’t want to confine this sport to traditional places only. We will give our suggestions and share our experience in that regard. We will also try to hold future Khelo India Games in a better and smooth way,” he said.

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