Thinley Namgay 

The fourth Asian Para Games (APG)  scheduled to take place in Hangzhou, China from October 22 to 28 this year is postponed to October next year.

The Asian Paralympic Committee (APC), Hangzhou Asian Para Games Organising Committee (HAPGOC) and other stakeholders, decided on the deferral on August 17.  The decision was taken considering the Covid-19 pandemic in China.

Bhutan first participated in the third APG, held in Indonesia from October 6-13, 2018. Archer Pema Rigsel and shooter Kinley Dem participated in the APG.

Bhutan today has only a few para -athletes. They are para -archer Pema Rigsel, para shooter Kinley Dem, and para -badminton player Sapuna Subba.  Sapuna Subba is a student at Royal Thimphu College (RTC).

Two other para -athletes reside at the kidu hostel in Thimphu, but they don’t have minimum qualification standards to take part in APG.

Para-athlete Chimi Dema, who is also studying at RTC said she will not compete in the upcoming APG. Para-athlete Gyeltshen has resigned.

One of the officials from the Bhutan Paralympic Committee said it’s concerning that there are only a handful of para -athletes today to participate in such important regional games.

The official said that people with disabilities are not coming forward to take part in para games.

Official said limited budget from the government hinders sending para -athletes for classifications and qualifications games in other countries.

This is the second time China will host the APG after staging the first edition of the games in Guangzhou in 2010.

With the motto, “hearts meet, dreams shine”,  4,000 athletes from 43 nations are expected to gather at the event and compete in 22 sports.