Mascot and Logo of 2024 Khelo India Winter Games

The recently revealed mascot and logo for the 2024 Khelo India Winter Games showcase a snow leopard named ‘Sheen-e She’ or Shan, emphasizing the region’s rich biodiversity. The logo creatively integrates the Indian tricolor and symbols representing Ladakh.

Hosted in Two Legs: Ladakh and Jammu & Kashmir

The Khelo India Games, initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to boost Olympic sports and unearth grassroots sporting talent, will be conducted in two parts. The first leg is set to take place in Ladakh from February 2-6, featuring Ice Hockey and Speed Skating. 

Subsequently, the second leg will be in Gulmarg, Jammu & Kashmir, from February 21-25, showcasing Ski Mountaineering, Alpine Skiing, Snowboarding, Nordic Ski, and Gondola competitions.

Spotlight on Ladakh and Jammu & Kashmir

This marks the first time the annual Khelo India Winter Games will be hosted in Ladakh. Previous editions, starting from 2020, were held solely in Jammu & Kashmir. By showcasing winter sports, the Games aim to turn Ladakh and Jammu & Kashmir into emerging winter sports hubs, potentially boosting tourism and creating economic opportunities.

Snow Leopard: A Symbol of Local Ecology

The choice of a snow leopard as the mascot is not just symbolic; it also draws attention to ecological challenges in the fragile trans-Himalayan region. 

Native to high altitudes above 3,200m, the snow leopard’s conservation is closely tied to safeguarding local habitats from climate change and human activities. The mascot serves as a powerful symbol for environmental protection.

Broader Goals: Tourism, Economy, and Grassroots Sports Development

Hosting these Games goes beyond sports; it aims to spotlight Ladakh and Jammu & Kashmir as emerging winter sports destinations. The event has the potential to stimulate tourism and create economic opportunities in these regions. 

Additionally, it aligns with broader goals, such as grassroots sports development and the discovery of new talent in winter disciplines, even in remote areas.

Future Prospects for Winter Sports in India

India, with its world-class infrastructure and favorable conditions, holds great potential for grooming Winter Olympics talent. Initiatives like the Khelo India Games play a crucial role in building exposure and fostering a culture around winter sports. This, in turn, lays the foundation for expanding India’s global sporting footprint beyond traditional strengths.

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