LUCKNOW: In an electrifying, hair-raising, high-tech ceremony at the Jupiter Hall, Indira Gandhi Prathisthan here, Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath, in the august presence of the Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Anurag Singh Thakur, launched the official logo, mascot, torch, anthem and jersey of Khelo India University Games Uttar Pradesh 2022 on Friday.
Inspired by the ideology of Kaushal, Neeti and Dhairya, the games are slated from May 25 to June 3 in various cities of Uttar Pradesh. The grand launch witnessed a phenomenon replete with anamorphic visual delights with 3D displays, a stunning opening ceremony, glittering launches, technological wonders that dazzled, engaged and impressed along with some amazing cultural performances. The launch showcased an immersive virtual world of technology that is high on entertainment.
Hon'ble Chief Minister, UP, also flagged off four Torch Relays which will crisscross the western, eastern, central, and Bundelkhand regions of India's largest state over the next 20 days.
Among other dignitaries present were Girish Chandra Yadav, Sports Minister, Govt. of Uttar Pradesh, Daya Shankar Singh, Transport Minister ( Independent Charge), Govt. of Uttar Pradesh, Navneet Sehgal, IAS, Additional Chief Secretary, Department of Sports and Youth Welfare, Govt. of Uttar Pradesh and Ekta Vishnoi, Deputy Director General, Sports Authority of India, Dr. Pankaj Mittal, Secretary General, AIU, Sanjay Saraswat, Executive Director, SAI and other dignitaries.
Addressing the gathering, Yogi Adityanath said, "Today the environment and the perception of the state of Uttar Pradesh has undergone a massive transformation with peace and rule of law prevailing which is why sports and sportspersons are flourishing here.
"I welcome all participating athletes and coaches. officials and support staff to the 3rd Khelo India University Games Uttar Pradesh 2022 and wish them a pleasant stay in the state. I am confident that our team will ensure the best conditions, sporting facilities and infrastructure to make this event a memorable one. Khelega India, Badhega India," he said.
Anurag Singh Thakur said, "It gives me great satisfaction today that the Khelo India movement, as envisioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is a revolution and that revolution has today reached Uttar Pradesh, India's largest state. University athletes participating in these games will know that sports itself is a great pathway to learning the hardest lessons of life."
"The Khelo India initiative has also remained tremendous for the sports ecosystem of the country. Just a few weeks back, we celebrated 5 Years of Khelo India. The last 5 years have brought drastic changes to the landscape of Indian sports. There are several Khelo India athletes who have been inducted into the elite Target Olympic Podium Scheme over the years based on their performance and are today making the country proud in multiple international competitions. The synergy in the sports ecosystem that has been created through these competitions and various schemes have indeed helped our athletes to progress easily from one level of competition to the other," he said.
On the occasion, Girish Chandra Yadav, Sports Minister, of Uttar Pradesh, launched the official games jersey which prominent UP sportspersons like Lalit Upadhyay, Sudha Singh and Divya Kakran donned and showed off with aplomb on the stage.
The game's mascot Jitu the Barasingha, the exotic vibrant state animal who embodies "Garv se Gaurav" was then unveiled by the Chief Minister himself.
The final unveiling was that of the games' torch which was then brought on stage one by one by UP sports icons Lalit Upadhyay, Vandana Kataria, Sudha Singh, Vijay Yadav, Danish Mujtaba. Upon being handed over the torch by the sports icons, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanathlit it on the anamorphic screen and then proceeded to the parking area to flag off the four torch relays proceeding in four directions on canters.
The 12-day-long KIUG UP 2022 will be held in the cities of Varanasi, Noida and Gorakhpur, besides the state capital of Lucknow with Delhi's Dr. Karni Singh Shooting range hosting the Shooting competition. The Kabaddi competition begins in Noida on May 23 while a few others begin at the various venues on May 24, as well.
More than 4000 athletes from 200 Indian universities will compete in 21 sporting disciplines at the games which are officially scheduled from May 25-Jun 3, 2023.
The opening ceremony is slated for May 25 in Lucknow. The games will exemplify the finest sporting spirit, raising the bar of excellence and for the honour of competing, playing and winning at the highest levels of true sportsmanship, guts and glory.