DHADING, Nov 23: The 16th Himalayan White Water Rafting Championship has started in Fisling on the banks of Trishuli River in Dhading.
Janardan Rijal, joint secretary of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, inaugurated the three-day event amid a program on Tuesday.
Nepal Rafting and Canoeing Association (NRCA) is organizing the event in association with Nepal Association of Rafting Agents (NARA) with the objective of promoting water sports and enhancing skills of Nepali rafting guides and kayakers.
Inaugurating the event, Joint Secretary Rijal said that events like rafting championship help in tourism promotion through which the country can earn foreign exchange. He also said that the National Sports Council (NSC) has prioritized rafting to develop it as a competitive sport.
Similarly, Man Bahadur Neupane, president of NRCA, said that the association has been organizing the championship for the development and promotion of sports tourism in Nepal. “We have been organizing this championship every year to promote domestic and international tourism in Nepal through adventurous water sports,” he told Republica.
The event also aims to establish Nepal as a hub for water activities.
NSC included rafting as a sporting event this year only.
Meanwhile, National Canoeing Slalom Championship, an event under the Himalayan White Water Rafting Championship, concluded on Tuesday. Other events like freestyle canoeing and boater-cross kayaking will also be organized during the championship, according to the organizers.
A total of 101 rafters and kayakers, including 20 foreigners, are participating in the championship. Foreign rafters and kayakers are from countries like India, the US, Japan and Turkey.
The winner, first runner-up and second runner-up of the championship will get opportunity to represent Nepal in the Asian Games 2018 to be held in Indonesia.