ABBOTTABAD, Aug 30 (APP)::A delegation of Japan Special Athletes were warmly received when they entered into historical Kunj Football ground here for their participation in the 27th edition of the International Special Games, which got under way amidst tight security in and around the venues.
MPA and Chairperson Social Welfare KP Momina Basit was the chief guest on this occasion who formally inaugurated the Games with more than 500 special athletes from all across Pakistan are taking part in 27 Games including nine events for the females.
DG Sports KP Asfandyar Khattak, Director Operation Syed Saqlain Shah, former Director Sports Tariq Mehmood, Director Event Niamat Ullah Khan, Director Events Zakir Ullah, officials, players and large number of spectators were also present.
The ceremony was started with the recitation of Holy Quran, followed by National Anthem and a grant March Past of all the participating athletes including six athletes delegation from Japan who specially arrived from Japan to express solidarity with special athletes of Pakistan.
It is for the first time that a six member special athletes from Japan is taking part in the Annual International Special Games and were warmly received at the entrance of the ground. “It is a big achievement of the Directorate of Sports KP and District Administration, District Govt that without any break the Games are being organized regularly from the last 27-years,” Momina Basit said while addressing the gathering.
She said the people of Pakistan is expressing solidarity with the people of Kashmir and the players present on this occasion paid rich tribute to the sacrifices being rendered by the innocent Kashmiries.
She said it was an honor for the people of Hazara Division that more than 500 special athletes came to Abbottabad for Games. “Giving importance is actually to address deprivation of the special players.” she said, adding, the special players are as important as normal players and taking such initiative means involving them in healthy sports activities.
DG Sports KP Asfandyar Khattak on this occasion disclosed that the Games is an annual feature of the Directorate of Sports Calendar and that is why special athletes from across Pakistan are always waiting for the event. He said as desired by Senior Minister for Sports KP Muhammad Atif Khan, all appropriate measures have been taken to facilitate the players.
He said each of the players are providing proper uniform, track-suites, shoes, dialing and travelling allowances besides good accommodations. He also lauded Commissioner Hazara Syed Zaheer Ul Islam, DC Aamir Afaq, DSO Waseem Ahmad and Director Operation Syed Saqlain Shah for taking appropriate measures for event’s success. He disclosed that speaker provincial assembly Mushtaq Ahmad Ghani will grace the occasion as chief guest in the closing and prize distribution ceremony. The closing ceremony followed with a grand firework would be organized on August 31, 2019 at 7 pm.
He said players from Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan, Islamabad, Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Merged Tribal Areas, and KP are taking part in wheel chair cricket (male and female), standing cricket (male and female), badminton (male and female), wheel chair singles and doubles badminton both male and female, table tennis wheel chair and standing both male and female, athletics male and female wheel chair and standing, tug of war male and female, sake race, wheel chair race both male and female, power lifting (male) and bodybuilding (male).
Asfandyar Khattak said that a data compilation have been completed of the players and those won gold, silver and bronze medals in both teams and individual events would also be provided sports scholarships.
Earlier, a walk of the all the participating athletes including athletes from Japan started from Kunj ground Kashmir Chowk. The participating special athletes chanted full throat slogans by expressing solidarity with people of Kashmir.