‘PM Youth Talent Hunt Program’ to promote sports in country

Ijaz Ahmad Khan

PESHAWAR, Aug 24 (APP):The initiative of ‘Prime Minister’s Youth Talent Hunt Program’ for promotion of sports to encourage talent to bring laurel of international medals in South Asian, Asian, commonwealth and Olympic games to the country.

The Prime Minister’s Youth Program realized that sports should be considered an essential element in human resource development. Thus, ports is taken as a tool for transforming the youth into a self-confident, organized and capable workforce.

The Talent Hunt Youth Sports League was initiated in 12 different games including badminton, boxing, cricket, football, handball, hockey, judo, squash, table tennis, volleyball for men and women whereas weightlifting and wrestling for men.

Out of these games, weightlifting and wrestling trials and provincial leagues are completed and the national league would be announced at the end of the current month. Now trials of hockey male and female have already been kicked off across Pakistan including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Overall 25 regions are being listed for the trials venues and likewise Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is going to hold the trials of both male and female in five different regions including Bannu, Peshawar, Mardan, Hazara, and Swat.

Director General Sports, University of Peshawar and former international gold medalist athlete Bahre Karam and deputy director sports and national athlete Maria Samin Jan termed the Prime Minister’s talent hunt program was a landmark initiative that would significantly help promote sports in the country including KP.

Talking to APP, they said the program would enhance skills of the young players, especially in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa besides giving them the required exposure at national and international levels.

“Its main objective is to provide equal opportunities to both male and female players to promote excellence in sports with a view of supporting the right talent for eight different sports,” Behre Karam said.

He said, “the project would further nurture the young players systematically and through scientific training methods,” adding the landmark initiative is intended to provide sports-related current knowledge to youth through sports teachers, coaching, trainers, managers to enhance their skills and gain long term experience.

One of its key aspects is that the Prime Minister Youth Program and Higher Education Commission along with higher education institutions are working closely for the handholding of talented young players.

These stakeholders are collaborating with Pakistan Sports Board and relevant sports federations to provide opportunities to these young players representing Pakistan in Olympic, SAF Games and other international competitions.

Likewise, youth aged 15-25 (men and women) are eligible to enlist and apply hailing from 25 regions across Pakistan. Punjab has been divided into Faisalabad, Lahore, Gujranwala, Rawalpindi, Bahawalpur and Multan regions while Sindh in Hyderabad, Karachi, Sukkar, Larkana, Shaheed Benazirabad regions, Balochistan in Kuzdar, Uthal-Hub, Quetta, Lorelai, Dera Murad Jamali regions and Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan and Islamabad comprising Islamabad, Shardu, Gilgit, Mirpur and Muzaffarabad regions respectively.

Following weightlifting, wrestling and hockey (male and female) in the second phase of the talent hunt program would be organized in volleyball, badminton, table tennis, and squash for both male and female players.

Bahre Karam said women and men hockey trials under the Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s Youth Talent Hunt Program was being organized on August 23-24 at the Astro-Turf of the Islamia college ground for men and Abdul Wali Khan sports complex Charsadda for women.

Vice Chancellor University of Peshawar Professor Dr. Muhammad Idrees, Special Assistant Youth Affairs for KP Engr. Muhammad Arif Rawan, DG Sports UoP Bahre Karam and Deputy Director Sports and national athlete Maria Samin Jan visited the trials.

Bahre Karam and Maria Samin Jan supervised the hockey men and women trials at Islamia college university hockey ground and Abdul Wali Khan sports complex, Charsadda, before visiting the venues and thoroughly checked the overall preparations.

Engr. Muhammad Arif Rawan told the news agency that both men and women players aged 15-25 were eligible for the two-day trials. He said it was the efforts of Engr. Amir Muqam, Advisor to the Prime Minister for Political and Public Affairs, Heritage, Culture and Sports Division and Shaza Fatima Khawjah, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Youth Affairs want to engage youth in healthy sports activities.

Maria Samin, Deputy Director Sports Shaheed Benazir Bhutto women university was nominated by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) as head of the women hockey trials under the Prime Minister Youth Talent Hunt Program for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Bahre Karam was headed the overall affairs of trials across Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Arif Rawan said soon after the trials, the Prime Minister’s Youth Hockey League would also be conducted first at the provincial level wherein all the selected players from Bannu, Peshawar, Mardan, Hazara and Swat would make a team to represent KP in the national hockey league later on at national level wherein 25 teams from as many regions would take part.

About hockey trials, he said, after Peshawar on August 23-24 at Islamia college Peshawar for men and Abdul Wali Khan sports complex Charsadda for female held, followed by trials at Astro Turf of Mardan sports complex on August 27- 28, Swat on August 31 and September 1, 2022 at Makan Bagh, Mingora hockey ground, Hazara on September 4-5 at Abbottabad police hockey ground, and Bannu on September 8-9 at Qazi Mohib hockey complex. He said all games trials were open for all ages between 15-year-old to 25-year-old.

DG Sports UoP Bahre Karam termed the trials very vital for the promotion of hockey and other games in KP.

He said without promotion of our national game at the grassroots level, Pakistan could not achieve its lost glory in the world of hockey.

However, the success of such talent hunt purely lies only in its continuity for a longer duration rather than testing another project of shorter duration.

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