The Sangrah nodal club team, which had been declared folk dance winners in the district-level youth festival, which concluded here on Saturday evening, will, surprisingly, not be allowed to take part in the state-level youth festival scheduled to be held from December 12 to 14 at Rampur.
The youth affairs and sports department, which organises the festival, took the decision after a controversy arose that some members of the team were above 35 years of age against the norms, which laid down that only the artistes in the 15-35 age group were eligible to take part in the festival.
The fact came to light after a participant from the Sanskrit college alleged that artistes of even above 35 years of age were also allowed to take part in the festival and the department had remained silent over the violation.
Sources said as the controversy arose, the department on Monday directed the coordinator of the winning team to submit age certificates of the artistes, which had taken part in the event. Hence, it was found that some participants were actually above the age of 35 years, which violated the norms of the festival.
The department, while disallowing the winning team for the state-level festival, decided to allow the Rajgarh team, which had stood second in folk dance, to replace the winning team at the state-level festival.
However, admitting the mistake, youth coordinator Suman Lata of the sports department, said that the trophy would not be taken back from the winning Sangrah team.
Now the question remains whether authorities concerned, responsible for the lapse, not be made accountable?
Interestingly, the department had not bothered to verify the age of participants at the block-level festivals as well.