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Reviving Traditional Games; Rediscovering Joy

Reviving Traditional Games; Rediscovering Joy

Khel Khoj evokes nostalgic memories of my childhood. It takes me back to those carefree days spent playing endless games with friends and family in the charming confines of my village. Those were the best and most joyful times of my life. However, with shrinking spaces and screens dominating, rediscovering traditional games in limited surroundings became a cherished yet challenging quest. Khel Khoj is a great initiative in this direction, where REVA University, one of the frontrunners in higher education, promotes and revitalises indigenous sports in alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, NEP 2020 and G20 India.   

The richness of our nation's heritage is truly awe-inspiring, woven with a tapestry of traditions that seamlessly integrate sports and games. From the timeless epics like the Mahabharata and Ramayana emerge echoes of these pastimes, reflecting their integral role in our culture. Khel Khoj symbolises a revival, a journey back to the roots of these ancient games, meticulously incorporating them into the fabric of the Indian Knowledge System. This initiative not only preserves our cultural legacy but also fosters a deeper understanding of our history, fostering a connection between the past and the present through the universal language of play. 

In 2023, we successfully organised the first edition of Khel Khoj with much fervour. Our REVA University campus turned into a game and activity zone as the day revived and rejuvenated the traditional and indigenous games of the bygone era in India. It was a festival mood as thousands of children and teenagers became part of Khel Khoj thereby providing insights to modern society on the importance of traditional games and bringing them back as a component of the Indian Knowledge System.  

This year also was no different as our campus transformed into a vibrant arena as many games and sports unfolded. The resonance of old martial arts like Kalaripayattu, Malla Khamba, and Thang Ta echoed through Khel Khoj, showcasing our rich heritage. The sports fiesta was a melting pot, uniting students from various schools, REVAites, teenagers, and children in an exploration of indigenous games, fostering pride in the Indian Knowledge System. Stalls buzzed with activity as participants immersed themselves in each game's history and rules. Students invested diligent efforts, not just in playing but in sharing the cultural legacy woven into these traditional sports. 

I want Khel Khoj to be an annual event as it creates a common platform for the awareness of long-forgotten games as well as their revival. Khel Khoj, the pursuit of forgotten games, encapsulates a quest to revive our ancestral pastimes. Our cultural tapestry, rich with rituals and traditions, bears witness to the enduring legacy of archery, hunting as a sport, wrestling, martial arts, and the strategic essence derived from these ancient games. Over time, technology's embrace has dimmed the once-vibrant allure of these cherished activities. While a few games transformed, many faded into obscurity. As we continue to move ahead of the curve with Khel Khoj, it's not just a search for games; it's a journey to rekindle the fading embers of our heritage, resurrecting forgotten echoes that once resonated through the heart of our culture.