Sambalpur and KIIT triumph at Odisha State Inter-University Sports meet

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Utkal sports meet
Winners pose with trophies and certificates at the conclusion of Odisha State Inter-University Sports Competition in Bhubaneswar.

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha State Inter-University Sports Competition 2023-24 concluded with an award ceremony held at Biju Patnaik Sports Complex of Utkal University, here on Monday.

Sambalpur University clinched the title of team champion in the men’s category, with Utkal University securing the runner-up position. In the women’s category, KIIT University emerged as the team champion, while Sambalpur University secured the runner-up position. The winners received cash prizes of Rs 30,000, Rs 20,000, and Rs 10,000 for the first, second and third positions, respectively.

The award ceremony was attended by vice-chancellor of Utkal University Prof Sabita Acharya, Olympian and Odisha’s ace sprinter Dutee Chand, registrar Dr Kanhucharan Dhir and director of Sports Council Dr Bijaya Kumar.

Chand underscored the importance of sports as she emphasised that extracurricular activities are crucial for the holistic growth of students. Serving as the chief guest, she stated that academic success alone does not shape the future; playing sports is equally vital. Sports, she added, play a crucial role in identity formation and encouraged students to balance academics with sports.

Dutee Chand also commended the initiatives led by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, highlighting Odisha’s transformation into the sporting capital of the country with state-of-the-art infrastructure and substantial investments. She applauded the achievements of athletes representing the state at national and global levels.

Utkal University organised the inter-university sports meet at the Biju Patnaik Sports Complex and Kalinga Stadium, with financial support from the Odisha State Higher Education Council and the Higher Education Department of the Government of Odisha. Approximately 20 universities participated in 13 sports categories, including races of various distances, javelin throw, discus throw, shotput throw, hurdles and relay races.

Dr Kirti Ranjan Mallick conducted the closing programme and extended gratitude during his vote of thanks.

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