The Telegraph
Saturday , September 17 , 2011
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Bihar Divas ground for international kabaddi meet
- Women players from 14 countries to take part in four-day championship as part of celebrations

Patna, Sept. 16: Women’s kabaddi teams from 14 countries would fight it out in a championship during next year’s Bihar Divas celebrations.

As part of the state’s centenary celebrations, the Bihar government would host a world women’s kabaddi championship from March 1 to 4 next year. This would be the first time that the state will host such an event.

State human resource development (HRD) department principal secretary Anjani Kumar Singh said: “This will be the first time that Bihar will host such an event where players from 14 countries will participate. The timing of the occasion is important as Bihar will complete 100 years of its existence.”

Among the 14 participating countries in the championship are England, US, Japan, Thailand, Korea, Sri Lanka, Iran, Bangladesh, Nepal, Malaysia, Pakistan and India.

Singh said the Indian Kabaddi Federation has given its consent for holding the tournament. “It is more likely that the tournament will be held at Kankerbagh Sports Complex, whose construction work would be completed before the celebrations begin,” he told The Telegraph.

Singh said the sports complex constructed on 15 acres, earlier belonged to the housing board. The work to complete the construction is going on at a brisk pace.

The hosting of the women’s kabaddi championship is also being seen as a morale booster for the women players of the state. There are several players from Bihar that feature in the national women’s kabaddi team.

Mokama girl Smita Kumari was part of the Indian women’s kabaddi team at the 2010 Asian Games at Guangzhou in China where women’s kabaddi team received a gold medal.

The Bihar government, apart from hosting the world kabaddi championship, would also hold a national-level soccer tournament during the Bihar Divas celebrations, where leading soccer teams from all over the country will participate.

The HRD principal secretary said: “We are in the process of inviting the teams that are going to take part in the tournament. The best football clubs in the country, including Bengal’s Mohun Bagan, Mohammedan Sporting, Goa’s Salgaocar Sports Club and teams from Kerala are also expected to participate at the event. The date for the soccer tournament has not yet been finalised.”

As Bihar entered its 100th year, the state HRD department as well as the art, culture and sports department had planned to host series of programmes.

The official function of Bihar Divas started on August 30 with a musical night of Wadali brothers at SK Memorial Hall.

Moreover, the art, culture and sports department has also sent a cultural troupe to participate at the three-day cultural fest in Allahabad from September 16 to 18.

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