Punjab Minister for Higher Education Raja Yasir Humayun Sarfaraz kicked off the much anticipated and first-ever University Sports League in Punjab at the Punjab University New Campus on Saturday.
The ceremony began with a ceremony and walk past of participants at PU Law College ground that was attended by PU Vice Chancellor Prof Niaz Ahmad, Higher Education Secretary Momin Aagha, Additional Secretary Tariq Hameed Bhatti, PU Director Sports Tahira Saleem. Players and teams of 48 universities from across Punjab, sports officials and a large number of students participated in the ceremony.
In his address to the players and officials the minster said it was for the first time that a university sports league in Punjab was being organized and its continuity would help produce players of international standards.
He said sports activities would help bring global sports laurels for Pakistan and would encourage youngsters to get actively involved in sports. The minister added that the university sports league would provide a positive platform to the youth so that they could utilize their energies in positive activities and polish their talent. Raja was of the view that the success of the sports league would also give life to sports equipment manufacturing industry and help the county earn millions of dollars.
In the first phase of the league, the competing teams would be engaging in cricket competitions, while hockey, football, basketball, athletics and other games would be included in the league later.
The minister assured that the University Sports League would become a regular feature of the academic calendar and would be organized every year. He said all universities would take ownership of these sports competitions, while thanking administrations of all universities, especially Professor Niaz Ahmad, for extending full support to organizing the mega sports league.
On his part, Prof Niaz said the Punjab government had set a new trend to promote sports activities and managed to organize such a mega event in a few days’ time. He announced that PU would sponsor all the awards for the winners of the competition that had been announced by the government.
On the occasion, the attendants also observed a minute’s silence to express solidarity with the victims of terrorist attack in New Zealand.
Later, Minister Raja Yasir Humayun and other officials unveiled University Sports League trophy.