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Earlier this morning, news emerged that the sports ministry had reportedly turned down the request for upgrading for three sports in India- Soft Tennis, Kho Kho and Fencing. Currently, Kho Kho and Soft tennis were clubbed in the "others" category for sports in India while fencing is in the "general" category after it was upgraded following a directive issued on September 1, 2015, from the Sports Ministry. According to the guidelines set up by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, there are four different classifications for the sports played across the country- high priority, priority, general and others. The list of high priority sports includes the ones which have a maximum chance at Olympic success. The most updated list consists of Archery, Badminton, Boxing Hockey, Shooting and Wrestling which are categorised under this. However, once one reaches the Priority category, the details start getting murkier. In its explanation given for rejecting the Fencing Association of India from being upgraded, TOI reports that the sports ministry said the following, "(Fencing) can be considered for additional assistance in relaxation of norms for extra foreign exposures to earn more points and improve rankings but not upgradation to the 'priority' category." There are certain guidelines in place that would help one determine the criteria to meet to be considered a priority sport. There are four pointers and a sport meeting any out of these four are eligible. It should be either:
- popular mass games in India
- Disciplines in which India has a medal in the last conducted Commonwealth or Asian Games
- Disciplines for sections requiring special attention
- Disciplines included in the Olympics, Asian Games or Commonwealth Games in which India has secured up to 6th place in individual events and 8th place in team events.