Next Goal is to Include Gatka in Asian, Commonwealth, and Olympic Games : Dhesi
Chandigarh, June 16 – Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi, President of the Gatka Federation UK and the first turban-wearing Sikh Member of the British Parliament, expressed his immense happiness on the inclusion of Gatka sport in the National Games of India.
In a statement Dhesi said “This achievement has brought great joy to Gatka athletes worldwide. The recognition of Gatka in India will inspire other countries to follow suit, thereby help in promoting this esteemed game and traditional art on an international scale.”
Dhesi emphasized that participation in the National Games would help the Gatka sport flourish not only in India but also around the world. He commended the World Gatka Federation for their contribution and applauded the tireless efforts of Harjeet Singh Grewal, President of the National Gatka Association of India (NGAI), over the past decade and a half to achieve this significant milestone. Dhesi extended his congratulations to all Gatka players, technical officials, coaches, and referees. He also expressed his gratitude to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) for their efforts in this regard and hoped that the apex sports body would provide more opportunities to the NGAI to promote this great art of India.
He informed that the time tested martial art was also being played as a self defence sport and was a regular game of competitions in higher educational institutions since 1936 but discontinued after 1985. It took 87 years for IOA to get acknowledge this age old art/sport as a game because many games contemporary to Gatka have already been recognised by the IOA as well as the International Olympic Committee, he added.
Dhesi revealed that the World Gatka Federation has devised a roadmap called “Vision Document-2030” to promote and popularize Gatka sport globally. He further disclosed that the next goal outlined in this roadmap was to include Gatka sport in the Asian Games, SAIF Games, Commonwealth Games, and Olympic Games. Dhesi emphasized the importance of achieving this goal, as other sports contemporary to Gatka have already been included in the aforementioned international games.
Dhesi said “I am confident that with the continued support of the international community, Gatka will soon be recognized as a truly global sport. I look forward to working with all stakeholders to make this vision a reality.” On this occasion Jang Bahaadur Singh and Kamal Preet Kaur also with him.