9th annual UK National Gatka Championship concludes in Hayes London after intense contests between girls & boys, men & women of 15 UK Teams
Hayes/ London : In a spectacular showcase of martial art skills, dedication and prowess during the 9th UK National Gatka Championship – 2023, Akali Baba Ajit Singh Gatka Akhara Manchester emerged as overall men’s champion, with Damdami Taksal Gatka Akhara Derby claiming the runner-up position.
This annual event unfolded on the grounds of Gurdwara Nanaksar Garib Niwaj in Hayes, featuring fifteen teams from ten different Gatka Akharas, comprising both girls and boys, along with men and women from various towns across the United Kingdom.
The competition was jointly inaugurated by Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi MP (Slough, UK), Rajya Sabha MP Baba Balbir Singh Seechewal (Punjab, India), Verinder Sharma MP (Ealing Southall), Harjeet Singh Grewal (President, World Gatka Federation), Baba Amarjit Singh Gurdwara Nanaksar Garib Niwaj and David Brogh (Hayes Business Partnership).
Prior to the opening ceremony, an Ardas was performed to seek blessings from the Almighty for the successful completion of the competition. Baba Seechewal commended the efforts of Gatka Federation UK and World Gatka Federation in promoting and popularising this martial art overseas.
He encouraged the Sangat to involve their children in Gatka, as it instills ethical values and equips them with self-defence skills. MP Tanmanjeet Dhesi, who is also the President of Gatka Federation UK for over a decade, thanked all guests and promoters for conducting this event in such a successful way.
Highlighting the activities and achievements of the UK Gatka organisation, he assured strong efforts would continue into the future to provide a good platform for young Gatka participants. Harjeet Singh Grewal, also president of National Gatka Association of India, emphasised the importance of the ‘three Gs’ – Gurmukhi, Gurbani and Gatka – in preserving and promoting the Sikh legacy among future generations.
He urged all Gurdwaras worldwide to become learning centres for these ‘three Gs’, so that ‘Mission Gatka for Olympics’ could be realised. He lauded the efforts of Gatka Federation UK for implementing digital scoring system through sensors for the first time and assured that the World Gatka Federation would implement such digital scoring system in other countries by making some improvements further.
On the occasion, Verinder Sharma MP, MLA Onkar Singh Sahota, Bhagwan Singh Johal, Rajinder Singh Purewal and others also addressed the gathering. Distinguished guests in attendance included Sarabjit Singh Dhanjal (Trustee), Harnek Singh Neka Merripuria, Sarbjit Singh Grewal Safetech Solutions, Surjit Singh Purewal, AAP leader Manjit Singh Shalapuri, Billa Gill Dinewaliya, Davinder Singh Patara, Harmeet Singh Virk, Ajaib Singh Garcha, Ravinder Singh Khera, Dalbir Singh Gill, Bhai Gajinder Singh Khalsa, Councillor Raju Sansarpuri, Councillor Kamalpreet Kaur, Councillor Jagjit Singh, Saheb Singh Dhesi, Ajaib Singh Puar, Manpreet Singh Badhni, Talwinder Singh Dhillon, Harbans Singh Kullar, Harjeet Singh Sarpanch, Mandeep Singh Bhogal, Nand Kumar Vashisht, Dr Tara Singh Alam, Nishan Singh Slough and Gurbachan Singh Atwal.
The teams represented different Gatka Akharas, including Akali Baba Ajit Singh Gatka Akhara Manchester, Baba Fateh Singh Gatka Akhara Erith, Damdami Taksal Gatka Akhara Derby, Baba Fateh Singh Gatka Akhara Woolwich, Akal Sahai Gatka Akhara Southall, Baba Fateh Singh Gatka Akhara Leyton, Akali Phoola Singh Gatka Akhara Coventry, Akal Purakh Ki Fauj Gatka Akhara Southampton, Baba Fateh Singh Gatka Akhara Gravesend and Patshahi Chevi Gatka Akhara Wolverhampton.
The contests, held across various age categories, were conducted on a knockout basis. In the under-14 boys team event, Akali Baba Ajit Singh Gatka Akhara Manchester secured first place, with Damdami Taksal Gatka Akhara Derby taking the runner-up position.
In the boys under-18 team event, Akali Baba Ajit Singh Gatka Akhara Manchester emerged victorious, after an intense battle against Baba Fateh Singh Gatka Akhara Erith. In the adults section, Damdami Taksal Gatka Akhara Derby clinched first position, while Baba Fateh Singh Gatka Akhara Leyton achieved second place.