After the astounding success of the recently concluded 3rd Khelo India Youth Games which witnessed over 10,000 participants from across India take part in the U-17 and U-21 age categories, Odisha State Government under the aegis of Sports Authority of India and Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports will host the first-ever Khelo India University Games at the Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT) in Bhubaneswar from February 22 to March 1.
The coveted event which aims to create a platform for youth to showcase their sporting prowess at the varsity level will witness 176 universities including Panjab University, Chandigarh, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, University of Delhi, Shivaji University, Kolhapur, University of Calicut, University of Calcutta, Jain University, Bangalore, University of Mumbai, University of Kerala, LNIPE University, Gwalior, University of Madras, SRM University, Chennai, Jamia Millia Islamia University, Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla, University of Mysore, ITM Gwalior, Veer Narmada University, Surat, University of Jammu, RMT Nagpur among several other Universities in the country.
“We are delighted to host the inaugural edition of the Khelo India University Games in association with KIIT University. This is a great initiative by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports and Sports Authority of India which will fortify the sports structure at a national level. Odisha is a sports-loving state and we have in the past hosted several marque international sporting events under the visionary leadership of our Hon’ble Chief Minister, Shri Naveen Patnaik and earned accolades and recognition from the global Sports fraternity. I am confident this event will set yet another benchmark and the true spirit of sportsmanship will be showcased. Our officials are working round-the-clock for a smooth execution of the event and to ensure everyone has a memorable experience. We look forward to welcoming students and officials from across India to come enjoy the Games and our hospitality in Bhubaneswar.” stated Shri Tusharkanti Behera, Hon’ble Minister for Sports & Youth Services, Odisha State Government.
“With 176 Universities from across India registering to participate in the first edition of Khelo India University Games, we are confident this will create a new revolution in sports at the varsity level where youth U-25 will get a great platform to showcase their talent in 17 different disciplines. The vision behind hosting this multi-discipline sporting extravaganza is to create a robust university games and identify talent who can be trained for the Olympics. Across the world, university games have formed the basis for identification and nurturing of Olympic talent,” expressed Shri Sandip Pradhan, Director General, Sports Authority of India.
Khelo India University Games will witness over 5000 athletes vie for top honours in 17 different disciplines namely archery, athletics, boxing, fencing, judo, swimming, weightlifting, wrestling, badminton, basketball, football, hockey, table tennis, tennis, volleyball, rugby and kabaddi which will be held at different venues within the KIIT University Campus, badminton and table tennis will be held at JN Indoor Stadium, Cuttack while athletics will be held at the iconic Kalinga Stadium.
Expressing the KIIT’s excitement to host the prestigious event, Dr. Achyuta Samanta, Founder, KIIT & KISS, said: “KIIT Deemed to be University, which has over 30,000 students, is equipped with state-of-the-art infrastructure that will make competing a great experience and I am hopeful the participating universities will enjoy the hospitality here. We will have several faculty members, officials and volunteers from KIIT working day and night to ensure all participants are provided with everything they require to compete to their potential.”