On September 13, the Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed described sports as an inseparable part of education, saying the focus on extra-curricular activities should be realistic and not a mere symbolic exercise.He stressed upon making games an essential part of the curriculum and said that, “Our children are blessed with great talent. It is imperative that the heads of the educational institutions provide them a platform to display their skills.” The Chief Minister was speaking after inaugurating the South Kashmir Sports Festival at Government Degree College for Boys in Anantnag.The minister said that adequate funds, over and above the normal allocation, have been provided to the Youth Services and Sports Department for restoration of flood-damaged sports infrastructure. Stating that a healthy mind rests only in a healthy body, the Chief Minister emphasized upon the importance of sports in overall personality development of the children.Further, he added that the government has made a new beginning by restructuring the State Sports Council by giving representation to those who have excelled in various sporting disciplines. “Sports has received the least attention and our capacities have been severely under-utilized. I have ordered immediate restoration of playgrounds and playfields so that these are used for organizing inter-school, inter-college and inter-district sporting activities,” he said.Sayeed said there is a need to create a very conducive and healthy atmosphere in sports arena so that we can produce many more Pervez Rasools. He asked the Sports Minister to revive the hustle and bustle of playgrounds by formulating a sports itinerary that is strictly adhered to.advertisementThe South Kashmir Sports Festival, being organized by J&K Police, will be a 15-day event, in which participants from the four districts of Anantnag, Pulwama, Shopian and Kulgam will compete with each other in various sporting disciplines including cricket, soccer, volleyball, kho kho and badminton.