Sports ministry decides to make sporting infrastructure accessible to all


New Delhi: Ministry of sports on Sunday decided to allow national and state sports federations, leagues and clubs to organise sports events in all sporting facilities owned by the government, free of cost, in an attempt of provide impetus to the Fit India Movement.

Stadiums in Delhi including Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Indira Gandhi Stadium, Major Dhyanchand Stadium and Karni Singh Shooting Range (KSSR) will be opened in the first phase for the state and national federations to host competitions, tournaments and league of all sporting disciplines.

If a non-Sports Authority of India (SAI) coach has a minimum of at least 10 wards under his/her training then he/she will be allowed to train their athletes at the stadia without any charge, according to the new policy. Training sessions can be booked by a coach online from November 1 and the coach can charge a reasonable training fee from his or her trainees.

Even youngsters, who are not training for any sport professionally, will also have access to these stadia after getting their photo identity cards made from SAI at a nominal cost.

Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said the ministry is going all out to promote the Fit India Movement.

“The Sports Ministry is going all out to promote the Fit India Movement, which has been envisioned by our Honourable Prime Minister. In India, there aren’t enough playfields where children and those interested in fitness and sports can pursue a sport. The Sports Ministry has at its disposal some of the best sporting infrastructure of the country, and needs to be utilised for the benefit of promoting the sporting culture and ecosystem in the country,” Rijiju said in an official statement.

“We had a meeting with all NSFs and all of them are very happy with this decision, and some of them have already submitted their plans to host leagues and tournaments in the coming months. The intention of the ministry is to increase the use of existing sports infrastructure by 3 times in the next 3 months. I am sure this step will not only promote fitness, but will also prompt more youngsters to compete in sport and help us identify more talent for the country,” he added.

Each stadium is being earmarked for a specific sport to ensure focussed use of the available infrastructure. Therefore, JLN will host football leagues, training and competitions organised by federations and IG stadium will be earmarked for wrestling, boxing, judo and badminton. Whereas, the shooting competitions will be hosted at KSSR and hockey and swimming at National Stadium.

The All India Football Federation and Hockey India have already charted out a roadmap for conducting a number of leagues and competitions in the next three months. The first league in the calendar is the Khelo India Golden League, underway at JLN. In this, football will be played by U-7, U-9 and U-11 boys and girls. (ANI)