Shahid Khan Afridi
PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Inter-College Boys and Girls Games got under way in a grand and colourful opening ceremony here at Hayatabad Sports Complex wherein 704 boys and girls athletes are taking in six different Games.
Secretary Sports Capt. (Retd) Mushtaq Ahmad was the chief guest on this occasion who formally inaugurated the Games in a colourful grand opening ceremony. All 704 athletes including 300 girls and 404 boys are taking in football, cricket and volleyball (Boys) and Badminton, Volleyball and Cricket (Girls).
Director General Sports KP Khalid Khan, Director Female Games Miss Rashida Ghaznavi, Director Sports Merged Area Pir Abdullah Shah, Director Youth Irfan Ali, Director Operation Aziz Ullah Jan, Deputy Director Sports and organizing Secretary Female Games Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Women Mariyyah Samin, Miss Raham Bibi, Miss Najma Qazi, Miss Hijab, Director NAB Mian Waqar, VC Islamia College University Professor Dr. Gul Majeed, Additional Secretary Education Wajid Ali, International Karate Coach Shah Faisal, Director Coaches Syed Jaffar Shah, officials and players were also present.
There was great enthusiasm witnessed among all the participating players from various colleges who in the first phases took part in different Games through eight different zones and in the second phase qualified for the final to be played at different venues. The colourful ceremony was started with the recitation from the Holy Quran by Khatijah of City Girls College Gulbahar, followed by the National Anthem and a smart March Past of all the participants contingents. All the boys and girls of the winners teams from eight different zones including Malakand, Swat, Mardan, Bannu, Kohat, Dera Ismail Khan, Hazara and Peshawar. Boys players will participate in cricket, football and volleyball competitions while girls will participate in volleyball, cricket and badminton competitions. The games will be played at different venues including the ground.
Speaking at the event, Secretary Sports Mushtaq Ahmed said that it is a fact that a strong body is essential for a healthy and strong mind, but unfortunately, due to social media and online games, today’s youth are away from the sports fields.
He said that the motto of the sports directorate is to attract the youth towards healthy activities and bring new talent to the fore, which will bring the name of the country and the nation to light. It is commendable that there is no lack of talent in the province but such talent needs to be polished, he said.
He said that sports is the only thing that can make a country and nation famous with its recognition in the world. Yes, in earlier times there were not so many facilities and children were not encouraged in sports, but now that is not the case, now sports has become an industry and the government is investing a lot in it. He said soon a MoU would be signed with PCB in the future to establish a Cricket Academy like NCA in Lahore with modern facilities in the province.
He said that it can be estimated from the budget of sports that how serious the provincial government is for sports. DG Sports Khalid Khan said that more than 14500 players from 290 colleges participated in the first phase of these games in which the winning team of each zone is representing their region in the provincial competitions. At the end of the ceremony, the famous Pashto singer Bakhtiar Khattak also performed well with his good numbers and received thundering applause from the players.