By a Staff Reporter
Kathmandu – The Ninth National Games scheduled to be held in Pokhara of Gandaki Province in June has been postponed once again. The Ministry for Youth and Sports confirmed that the games have been deferred. Organising a press conference on Tuesday, the ministry said that the national games have been rescheduled for October.
According to the ministry, the Ninth National Games will now be held from October 14 to 20. Earlier, a meeting of the Council of Ministers had decided to organize the Ninth National Games from June 5 to 11 in Pokhara.
Minister for Youth and Sports Maheshwar Jung Gahatraj informed that the Council of Ministers announced the new date for the national games upon the recommendation of the National Sports Council (NSC). The minister said that the games had to be postponed because of inadequate time for preparation. He said that the sports authorities had to follow the Public Procurement Act for the preparation of the games due to which they could not organize it on time.
“Gandaki Province had been selecting players for the national games in Pokara. They also said that they didn’t have adequate time. Madhes Province also requested us to postpone the games. In the meantime, we had the local elections while the exams of grade 11 and 12 will coincide with the games,” said Minister Gahatraj, adding, “We were under pressure to select players for the Asian Games on the basis of their performance in the national games. But the Asiad itself was postponed so we thought it would be best to defer the national games as well.”
Minister Gahatraj said that they had also considered organizing the games in late June but decided not to go ahead considering the adverse weather during that time.
A board meeting of the NSC on April 22 had decided to include 38 sports disciplines – 36 competitive events and 2 demonstration games – in the Ninth National Games. The NSC unveiled the logo, mascot and slogan for the games on May 7.
The NSC had fixed the deadline for registration of teams within May 24. However, it was not possible to register the participating teams within May 24 as the district-level selection was not over.
The NSC had earlier informed that a total of 11 teams including 7 provinces, three departmental teams and one team representing NRNs would compete in the event.