Football in the state of Jammu and Kashmir has seen a phenomenal amount of growth in the recent past with the addition of many State Football Academies (SFAs) in the Valley. Now, to further increase paticipation, especially among younger, school-going children, the Delhi Public School, Srinagar, has organised the first-ever night football tournament in the region as reported by The Tribune.
This is being done to encourage the students and young sportspersons of Jammu and Kashmir to take up sport by generating and interest in the activity.
“The idea is that why shouldn’t our children get the same facilities like those in other states and countries,” said Vijay Dhar, pro vice-chairman of the school in question to The Tribune. “On the first day, there were 3,000 people watching the match. It was very encouraging. We will hold such tournaments in the future as well.”
Jammu and Kashmir has recently been listed as one of the states in India that is set to receive some extra government funding from the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (MYAS) as a part of the Khelo India scheme. A sanctioned amount of Rs 14.30 crore was set to be cleared from the Centre and was directed be used to provide soft support in terms of coaches, equipments, technical support and organizing competitions for block-level sports. Presumably, efforts to stabilise the Valley through sports are certainly on.
This night tournament, the first of its kind, began on September 7 and will be on till September 16. The tournament has been named the Chinar Cup and, along with the Delhi Public School, it has been organised in collaboration with Army Public School in Srinagar.
“Along with academics, we want that children should excel in sports as well. Equal importance is given to girls taking part in sports,” Vijay Dhar added.
Among the students as well, responses were positive towards this tournament. The same report by The Tribune quoted a youngster describing the night tournament as a “unique experience” which he hoped would continue inspiring students to take up sports.
As a state, Jammu and Kashmir is really a powerhouse of talent if harnessed properly.
— The Bridge (@TheBridge_IN) September 7, 2018