BHUBANESWAR: The State Government has planned to construct a sports hostel in the tribal dominated and Naxal infested Malkangiri district to promote sporting activities.
At present, 15 sports hostels are functioning in 14 districts of the State covering disciplines of athletics, archery, Basketball, football, gymnastics, hockey, kabaddi, swimming, volleyball, wrestling and weight lifting.
As the Sports and youth Services department has already developed 150 mini-stadia under a a programme to set up one mini-stadium in each of the 314 blocks, the state government today directed the department to set timeline to cover the remaining blocks under the programme. Chief Secretary Aditya Padhi today reviewed the activities of the Soprts department and asked the department to undertake a massive youth engagement programme to promote sport culture in the state especially in rural areas. After establishing 41 mini-stadia in urban localities, the department has planned to extend the programme to another 37 urban centres.
In the current financial year, the state government has provided Rs 77 crore for construction of mini-stadium. Earlier, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has directed the sports department to ensure construction of at least four mini-stadia each in five municipal corporations of Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Berhampur, Sambalpur and Rourkela.
The government has planned to develop at least one mini-stadium in each of the 111 urban civic bodies comprising municipalities and notified area councils. Sports Secretary Visal Dev said plans are afoot to create facilities like indoor hall, open gym and lavatories in 150 functional mini-stadia. Each of the stadium will be provided Rs 15 lakh each.
The intake capacity of the sports hostels has been increased to 1250 from the exiting 1000 seats and the minimum age of admission into sports hostel is 12 years. However, the age for lateral entry is 20 years. It has been decided to organise youth engagement camps at college level. In the first phase 2,500 students - 25 girls and 25 boys from each college - will be trained. These students will create awareness programmes at panchayat level, Dev said.