The scintillating display of Archery, Shooting championships and nail-biting polo match between Patiala Chargers and Patiala Raiders set the ball rolling for 2nd Military Literature Fest
The first set of events in the run-up to the second edition of the Military Literature Festival (MLF) culminated in Patiala on October 28 with a nail-biting polo match between Patiala Chargers and Patiala Raiders.
Aimed at imbuing youngsters with the spirit of adventure sports and at inspiring them to join the armed forces, as envisioned by Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, the match was part of the Western Command Polo Challenge that was designed to inspire the large number of students, NCC Cadets and rural youth who had turned up to witness the exhilarating moment.
Lieutenant General Surinder Singh, GOC-in-C Western Command, was the Chief Guest and Senior Advisor to Punjab CM-Lieutenant General (retd) T.S. Shergill presided over the prize distribution ceremony that followed the match, which was preceded by two days of Shooting and one day of Archery competitions.
Shergill said that MLF is a joint initiative of Punjab Government, led by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, and UT Chandigarh Administrator VP Singh Badnore, in collaboration with the Indian Army. He said that today’s Polo match had set the tone for the second edition of the MLF.
Patiala Raiders, ably led by Arjuna Awardee World Cup player Colonel Ravi Rathore, dominated all the four rounds and won the match 4-3. Both teams stayed neck and neck in the first two rounds but in the third round, Colonel Ravi Rathore scored the fourth goal and kept Patiala Chargers under pressure in the last two rounds, blocking their every effort to score a goal. The best pony award was clinched by Messiah, rode by Colonel N.S. Sandhu of Patiala Chargers.
Students of PPS Nabha and jawans of 61 cavalry showed their horsemanship skill that included Standing Salute Lance Peg, Triple Tent Pegging, Indian File, Hanky Picking, Trick Tent Pegging and Decot Shooting.
Earlier, in a perfect show of exciting aerobatic skills, Senior Instructor Captain Malkiat Singh, having 10,000 hours of flying experience on various kinds of aircraft, both single and multi-engine, displayed multiple maneuvers including low pass depicting the high degree of flying skills with proximity to the ground. He got the standing ovation from the audience in spiral dive where the aircraft (Cessna-172) climbed to over 1500 feet above ground level and suddenly flapped, slowed down and came down in a spiral dive.
At the beginning of the show, the Military Band led by Subedar Rakesh Kumar, marching to the tune of ‘Deshon K Sartaj Bharat’, set the tempo for the event.
Patiala Chargers team comprised Dafedar Ramvir Singh, Colonel Nakul Yadav with Colonel N.S. Sandhu holding the back and Commodore, whereas Patiala Raiders team consisted of Major Narendra Kumar, Captain Anant Rajpurohit, Lieutenant Colonel A Samantray and Colonel Ravi Rathore holding the back.
Lieutenant General Balbir Sandhu (retd) and Lieutenant Colonel Manoj Dewan (retd) were the umpires and Major General N.S. Rajpurohit effectively performed the technical task of referee.
The second edition of the Military Literature Festival (MLF) was kicked off from Patiala, with the 1st Shotgun Shooting Championship organized on October 26 and 27 and Archery Championship organized on October 27.
A total of 150 Archers from across the state, including 20 International sportspersons, vying for honours in the Compound, Recurve and Indian style categories at the Punjabi University Field Grounds, dazzled the audiences with remarkable precision and target hitting on the first day of the Archery event. The highlight of the Archery Championship included the World Cup Gold medalist Amanjeet Singh, Asia Cup Gold medalist Prabhjot Kaur, besides the Asia Cup Silver winner Vikas Ranjan.
In the Shotgun Shooting Championships, being held at New Moti Bagh Gun Club in village Mainn, shooters from seven other states besides Punjab competed in Trap, Skeet and Double Trap events. Competition in the Trap category saw a contest between shooter as young as a 14- year-old Dehradun girl and a 64 year old Maharashtra veteran. There were 40 shooters in total in the Trap event, while 35 participated in the Skeet and Double Trap events.
Three international shooters – Amarinder Cheema, Gurjot Singh and Captain PPS Guron, along with national shooters Hakikat Grewal and Mankeet Guron, were the main draws in the shotgun events.
Sanjana Sethi clinched gold in Trap Junior Women category with another promising star Manraj Singh Sarao finishing first in Junior Men event. Inaya Vijay Singh landed podium finish with Gold in the Trap Women event with Vishavdev Singh Sidhu claiming Gold in Men fold.