Srinagar: A day before the state team was supposed to leave for Maharashtra to participate in a yoga competition, sports authorities informed them that their participation has been cancelled.
While the Jammu and Kashmir Youth Services and Sports have not informed them about the reason for cancellation, the players said it was because 80% of the players are from the valley and only 20% from Jammu region.
“The government is playing the Jammu-Kashmir divide game with us. Our future and dreams have been made hostage of politics,” said Ravender Singh, 16, a national gold medalist.
The Under-14, 17 and 19, boys and girls, yoga event of the National School Games is being held in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra, from January 28 to January 31.
The players had submitted all the documents and completed all necessary formalities, but at the last moment the JKYSS informed them about the cancellation.
“Our children were ready and they had worked hard for the competition. We came to know at eleventh hour about the cancellation. We were shocked,” said Dr Munazah, mother of Maryam Mubashir, 7, a state- level gold medalist.
The players, especially girls, were disappointed with the decision.
“JKYSS is playing with our dreams. It is already difficult for girls to play games, and they are making it worse now by being insensitive,” Sabreen Farooq, a national player told Kashmir reader.
When contacted, director JKYSS Naveem Agarwal disconnected the call as soon as this correspondent talked about the issue.
Deputy director Neelofar Amin did the same and handed over the phone to her father, Mohammad Amin.
Deputy Director National School Games Manik Thosare refused to comment on the issue.