Majority of sports federations have become personal fiefdoms of certain families, which is why corporates with substantial amounts of money are hesitant to invest in them, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting and Olympic silver medallist Rajyavardhan Rathore said on Saturday.
Rathore made the comments at a discussion on ‘Sports can be a key tool in country’s development’ with former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah at the ThinkEdu15 Conclave in Chennai.
Nodding to Rathore’s comments, Abdullah said that politicians should not be heads of sports federations. “The administration of federations should be handed over to professional sportspersons,” he said.
On a remark by Prabhu Chawla, Editorial Director of TNIE, that ministers who tried to pass the Sports Code Bill were ousted from the ministry itself, Rathore said that sports federations were already under the purview of the RTI and that action was being taken against erring federations.
Instead of spending money on building ‘Olympic level’ infrastructure, Rathore advocated spending the same on several small projects in villages and towns. On the question of priority given to cricket, Rathore said on the website of the sports ministry, you won’t find cricket on the list.