The Khelo India University Games will be held in Bengaluru’s Jain University
Karnataka will be hosting the second Khelo India University Games (KIUG) 2021, scheduled for later this year.
The announcement was made on Sunday by the Chief Minister of Karnataka, BS Yediyurappa, and Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, Kiren Rijiju. The games will be held in Bengaluru’s Jain University and other venues in the state, in partnership with the Association of Indian Universities (AIU). KIUG is the largest University Games in the country and is aimed at tapping sporting talent who can represent India in international events, including the Olympics.
The first edition of KIUG was held in Bhubaneswar in February 2020, and saw a total participation of 3,182 athletes in the U-25 age group, across 158 universities and colleges from all states.
This year, Yogasana and Mallakhamb have been added to the University Games, with an effort to preserve and promote the century-old sporting disciplines of the country.
With the inclusion of these disciplines, that the athlete participation figure is expected to cross 4000, this year. Also, the games will be conducted in the U-25 age category in accordance with the World University Games norms.
Speaking about being the host state and assuring the best possible support for the games, Yediyurappa said: “We are privileged to be hosting KIUG 2021, I am confident that the Games will produce some of the best future champions of India. The Govt of Karnataka will leave no stone unturned to make the University games a massive success.”
Envisioning even larger participation this time around, Rijiju said, “The University Games in Odisha last year was a massive success. Countries that have great sporting performance have often drawn their sporting heroes from university-level athletes. In the US for instance, the University Games are the bedrock of Olympic champions. In India, we need a sustained, focused plan to identify talent from Universities and I am happy that we have been able to do that with KIUG. This year, with the inclusion of the indigenous games in the competition, I’m hopeful that the number of participants will be even more.”