Jammu (Jammu and Kashmir) [India], August 29 (ANI): Jammu and Kashmir Gatka Association on Sunday organised the sixth edition of 'Virasat-e-Khalsa' Gatka championship, a Sikh martial art, at Gurudwara Nanak Sahab in Chand Nagar, Jammu.
Many youngsters enthusiastically participated in the competition wearing their traditional attires in distinguishing colours.
The Gatka Association often holds such competitions to promote the traditional art form of fighting and self-defence among the youth.
Ravinder Singh President of Jammu and Kashmir Gatka Association told ANI that it is a tradition and they organize these competitions so that the youngsters participate and gain knowledge about Sikh tradition.
"We want to preserve this art form. We consider it as a part of our lives. We are trying to make people aware of this art form which is quite useful in self-defence and reach the maximum number of people who want to learn Gatka. We are planning to take Gatka to every district of Jammu and Kashmir. Training has been started in Kashmir also," he said.
He also said that by practising this martial art, youngsters can keep themselves fit and prevent themselves from drug abuse.
Vice President of the Association, Jitinder Singh, also echoed a similar opinion.
H said, "In current times, we are seeing youth indulging in social evils of the society like drugs abuse, crime among other things. By adopting this martial art, the youth will remain far away from such things."
Several participants were delighted to compete on the stage as they had been practising for several months.
"Such events should be held often. This will promote Gatka as a sport across the world. This sport is important for girls for self-defence," said Suchitar Singh, a young participant.
Simranjot Singh, another participant was of a similar opinion that Gatka should be taken up by girls as well.
"We wish to promote the sport. It is an age-old tradition to use weapons. Girls should be at the forefront of this martial art. Very few parents send their children for learning martial arts. I urge the government to promote this Indian sport," he said.
"More and more people should be made aware about self-defence. It is a need of the current times," said Taranjit Singh, a participant. (ANI)