The Group I events of the Fifth Panchayat Yuva Krida Aur Khel Abhiyan (PYKKA) nationals jointly organised by the Union Sports Ministry, Sports Authority of India (SAI), Kerala Sports Council and the State Government begin at Lakshmi Bai National College of Physical Education(LNCPE), Kariavattom, from Thursday.
The four-day event will see 1,500 sports persons from 19 states competing in athletics, volleyball and taekwondo. The meet will be inaugurated by Sports Minister K B Ganesh Kumar at LNCPE stadium at 4 pm.
“Almost 1,500 sports persons from the rural parts of the country will partake in the championship. The girls will be accommodated at SAI-LNCPE while the boys will be housed in nearby schools and colleges,” said Sports Council president Padmini Thomas.
PYKKA scheme was introduced in 2008-09 by the Union Sports Ministry to improve rural sports infrastructure as well as bringing up talents to the mainstream.
Participants of 16 years and below and residing in rural areas alone are entitled to take part under the PYKKA. The competitions in other disciplines were held earlier elsewhere and this is the final phase of the national meet.
Being the host, Kerala, this time around, has fielded a full contingent comprising 71 sports persons and six officials.
M A Vahid MLA, will distribute the prizes at the valedictory function to be held at LNCPE stadium on Sunday at 5 pm.