Royal Enfield-LAHDC unveil blueprint for Ice Hockey development in Ladakh

NEW DELHI | Updated: 08 December, 2023 7:17 pm IST
Union Minister Anurag Thakur Launches Blueprint for Ice Hockey Development in Ladakh with Royal Enfield

NEW DELHI: Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, Anurag Singh Thakur, unveiled a comprehensive blueprint, entitled ‘The Game Changer,’ for the development of Ice Hockey in Ladakh.

 

The blueprint, released on Thursday, was commissioned by the Ladakh Administration and prepared by Royal Enfield, aiming to propel the Indian Ice Hockey team onto the global stage. These developments have been initiated with the objective of participation in the 2042 Winter Olympics.

 

Titled ,The Game Changer, this blueprint is a step towards supporting the vision of enabling the participation of an Indian Ice Hockey team at the 2042 Winter Olympics
Titled ,The Game Changer, this blueprint is a step towards supporting the vision of enabling the participation of an Indian Ice Hockey team at the 2042 Winter Olympics

 

Thakur lauded the initiative as a potential game-changer. “This blueprint is a Game Changer and will certainly pave the way to enable an Indian Ice Hockey contingent to participate in the 2042 Winter Olympics,” said Thakur. He expressed optimism that the blueprint would pave the way for an Indian Ice Hockey contingent at the 2042 Winter Olympics.

The initiative is expected to leverage the region’s talent pool, with over 90 per cent of India’s Ice Hockey players hailing from Ladakh. It not only focuses on sports development but also envisions enhancing resilience, generating livelihood opportunities, and boosting winter tourism.

 

 

Anurag Thakur, in a conversation with The New Indian highlighted the importance of Khelo India in elevating Indian sports to the global stage

 

Discussing the pivotal role of Khelo India in elevating Indian sports to the global stage, Thakur, in a conversation with The New Indian, emphasised, “Khelo India has played a significant role, evident in the burgeoning medal tally and the emergence of talented players, particularly from rural areas and economically disadvantaged families. The Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS), orchestrated by the Government of India, ensures comprehensive support, encompassing boarding, lodging, and training for athletes.”

 

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The blueprint had been made in collaboration with the European Business and Technical Centre (EBTC), involving local, national and international stakeholders covering various areas of the sport’s development.

 

The document, reviewed and shaped with inputs from the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), addresses equipment and infrastructure requirements, talent scouting, training camps, and governance.

Speaking to TNI, Member of Parliament from Ladakh, Jamyang Tsering Namgyal underscored the UT’s enduring status as the ‘Ice-Hockey’ capital of India, despite lacking formal recognition.

 

Member of Parliament from Ladakh, Jamyang Tsering Namgyal speaks to the New Indian

 

“Players from our region have proudly represented the country on the global stage,” said Namgyal, while expressing the Centre’s commitment to bolster the development of winter sports. “We aim to transform Ladakh into the hub for winter sports. The government has provided equipment and essential facilities free of cost to deserving players,” he added.

The Executive Director of the CSR wing of the automobiles company, Bidisha Dey, highlighted that ‘The Game Changer’ initiative had been brought forth to create a competitive environment at the grassroots. “A key component of the Blueprint is to create a competitive environment at a grassroots level to grow the sport.

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This would provide a platform for local talent to be identified and nurtured. Towards this, Royal Enfield and the Administration of the Union Territory of Ladakh are planning training camps across Ladakh, where teams will be selected to participate in a league-based tournament in Leh, this winter,” told Dey to TNI.

 

She added that this would, in turn, permit the Himalayan UT to leverage ice hockey as a tourist activity which will contribute to economic growth and the enhancement of livelihood among the people of Ladakh.

 

 

The Executive Director of the CSR wing of Royal Enfield, Bidisha Dey in conversation with The New Indian

 

Royal Enfield is currently working with all stakeholders to grow winter sports particularly Ice Hockey and winter tourism across the Himalayas, including Himachal Pradesh where the brand will support the development of the sport with training, infrastructure, equipment and the set-up of the Spiti Cup.

 

The blueprint was presented in the presence of advocate Tashi Gyaltsan, the Chief Executive Councillor of the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Leh, Mohd Jaffer Akhoon, Chief Executive Councillor, Kargil, LAHDC and Ravinder Kumar (IAS), Secretary to Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh, alongside Thakur and Namgyal.

 

The programme was undertaken under the supervision of Dey, the Executive Director of Eicher Group Foundation, in the national capital.

 

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