Pune, Jul 12 (UNI) Exuberating confidence over hosting of the third edition of the 2008 Commonwealth Youth Games (CYG) here, Union Agriculture Minister and patron of the games Sharad Pawar said the games will be an ''overwhelming success''.
Addressing a media conference after visiting all the stadia here, Mr Pawar said ''I have no doubt in my mind that the 2008 CYG, to be held in India for the first time, will be a resounding success.'' Mr Pawar, who is also president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), cited an example of the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL), whose newly introduced format of Twenty20 cricket matches took the world by storm. He said likewise, the youth games will have the tremendous success the world over.
The IPL event was telecast in 122 countries. Likewise, the 2008 CYG will also draw a large following among the 71 Commonwealth countries, who will take part in the games, to be held from October 12 to 18 this year.
Earlier, the Organising Committee chairman and MP Suresh Kalmadi said ''Due to the escalating costs of steel and cement, we have requested the Union Urban Development Ministry to release additional funds for completion of some of the remaining work under the Central Government's Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal (JNNRUM) scheme.'' Kalmadi further said M Ramachander, secretary in the Urban Development Ministry who was in the city recently, has himself seen the ongoing preparatory work and assured the needful will be provided.
To a query, both Pawar and Kalmadi agreed that a programme needs to be chalked out with the Maharashtra government and various State Associations for maintaining the facilities throughout year by conducting national and international events.
Kalmadi, who is also president of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA), pointed out that there is also a need for outsourcing the work of upkeep of facilities to private parties.
Recalling the experience of the 1994 National Games, the brainchild of both Pawar and Kalamdi, they said ''We don't want similar thing to happen to the ultramodern facilities that are now created.'' On funding of the talented sportspersons involved in the Olympic sports, Pawar said the BCCI and the Central Government offered Rs 25 crore each for training the sportspersons under foreign coaches and give foreign exposure to sportspersons to enhance their careers.
UNI IS SSS PDT UCS2244