The 29th State Karate Championship 2023, organised by the All Meghalaya Karate-Do Association (AMKA), began here today at the Indoor Stadium at the Jawaharlal Nehru Sports Complex.
The two-day event is being supported by the Directorate of Sports and Youth Affairs, Government of Meghalaya. A total of 372 karatekas, from below 10 years of age up to the senior level, are participating and have been drawn from around the state.
The chief guest at the inauguration was Ransom Sutnga, Co-Chairman of the Meghalaya Industrial Development Corporation Ltd and President of Mawkhar Sports Club.
In his speech, Sutnga said, “AMKA always sets a high standard in organising championships. Since 1981, AMKA has produced 200 national medallists and 20 international medallists.” He added a hope that many more would be produced in the years to come.
Sutnga, who declared the championship open, also generously presented a cheque to AMKA President Hunlang Lytan and General Secretary Ksan Warjri to aid the association in its work.
The guest of honour at the programme was Meghalaya State Olympic Association Working President John F Kharshiing.
He congratulated AMKA for conducting the championship and noted that karate is one of the most popular sports in the state. Kharshiing appreciated the parents for supporting their children in taking up this and other sports and encouraged them to go through the Meghalaya Sports Policy to see how it could directly benefit them. He also encouraged clubs and academies to apply for grants under the state’s YESS Meghalaya scheme.
This tournament comes just a month before the 5th Meghalaya Games, which will be held in Tura, and the karatekas were encouraged to use this as a stepping stone for that event. Kharshiing also said that the Meghalaya Games is itself a preparatory for the National Games, which the state will host in a few years.
The championship features kumite (sparring) and kata (demonstration of form) categories (both team and individual) divided by age and weight. Sports Authority of India, Shillong, won the overall men’s team title in the last edition, with AMKA’s own team winning the women’s championship.