Machhiwara: Gatkebaaz from Ludhiana district bagged first position on the concluding day of Punjab state Gatka Championship (men & women) at Machhiwara (Ludhiana) by winning 73 gold, 26 silver and 2 bonze medals during the mega event. Former champion Patiala district have to console with second place with 43 gold, 24 silver and 17 silver medals while Gurdaspur got third position with 8 gold, 26 silver and 15 bronze medals. Divulging details Punjab Gatka Association coordinators Baljinder Singh Toor and Dr Deep Singh Chandigarh said that in this two days martial art tournament about 900 Gatka players from 15 districts participated in under 14, 17, 19, 22 and 25 years events in single soti, farri-soti and weapons demonstration. Speaking on the occasion MLA Amrik Singh Dhillon facilitated the Gatka players and assured all help to the Gatka Association. Gatka Federation of India President Harcharn Singh Bhullar IPS asked the participants to refrain from bazigiri acts and stunts during the performance of martial art skills. Adding further he said that adopting Gatka as an amateur sport enables youth to stay healthy and agile and keeps them away from the menace of drug abuse and other intoxicants to lead a disciplined life. General Secretary Harjeet Singh Grewal said that Gatka Federation has taken major initiatives to revive and promote this rare art as a sport in India and abroad by organising “Virsa Sambhal” Gatka competitions to perpetuate the rich legacy of age-old martial art Gatka amongst the future generations on one hand and to revive this dying art on the other. He solicited that the Punjab Government must award due gradation to Gatka sport at par with other games at the earliest. Among others Sabans Singh Manki member SGPC, Jarnail Singh Bajwa Sunny Enclave and Avtar Singh Patiala also spoke on the occasion. It is informed that the martial art Gatka is a style of fighting with sticks between two Gatka or more players, intended to simulate the sword and focuses on infusing physical, spiritual and mental fitness. ~ by GatkaFederation ~ Source: