Set up sports academies in CWG stadiums, says IOA chief

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New Delhi, Oct 12: Government should consider setting up sports academies at stadiums built for the Commonwealth Games, according to IOA's acting president Vijay Kumar Malhotra who on Wednesday said better utilisation of the existing infrastructure would help in promoting sports in the country.

Malhotra said that not a single stadium has been given to the sports federations nor has it been used for academies.

"There are at least 12 stadiums which belong to the Sports Ministry and a few belong to the Delhi Government. We should select some Olympic disciplines and academies should be set up in these stadiums, otherwise sports cannot come up in the country", Malhotra told reporters.

Malhotra was also lamented that not a single stadium has been given to the sports federations. "If the stadiums are given to sports federations, they could make better use of it and avail of the facilities".

The acting IOA chief also urged the government to set up residential accommodation for sportspersons in Delhi which currently has no such facility.

"We have talked to the DDA and the Delhi Government in this regard. We need to have residential accommodations for the sportspersons. It is very important," he observed.

Talking about archery, he said the Archery Association of India (AAI) has decided to focus on development plans, which will include importing equipment of Rs 1.25 crore and constructing exclusive archery range in Delhi.

Indian archers have so far clinched four quota places (three women and one men) in London Olympics 2012 and Malhotra, who is also the AAI president, said that the federation will make sure that all the assistance is provided to the probables.

"AAI is committed to make sure that all the possible assistance would be provided to probables till the Olympics and we will try to maintain the intensity after that as well," he said.

By virtue of their best ever performance in World Championship in Italy, Recurve women team -- Deepika Kumari, Bombayala Devi and Chekrovolu -- not just bagged silver, they also secured three quota places in Olympics.

Jayant Talukdar has also earned one individual berth. India still have a chance to achieve two more places in Men Recurve category through a team qualification tournament to be held in World Cup Stage III at Ogden (USA) from June 17-23, 2012.

Malhotra said the federation is ready to provide "training programme strategising for their sustained progress till the Olympics".

"Now that the archers have proved their talent, they need to be harnessed and nurtured properly."

Indian archers have won record 37 medals, including 13 gold, 16 silver and 8 bronze this year.

Unveiling the future development plans and the road map, Malhotra said that AAI aims to hold four prize money national ranking archery circuit tournaments in different locations every year and more than Rs 30 lakhs would be distributed among the archers as prize money.

"Besides, equipment of Rs 1.25 crore would be imported, construction of an exclusive archery range in Delhi would take place and a possibility of residential academy would also be explored."

AAI also plans to start training courses/seminars for coaches, judges and other technical officials, apart from ensuring registration of each and every archer and upload their data in its website.

Jobs for those who excelled not only in international but in national circuit will also be explored.

Informing that World Archery Federation has awarded AAI for the maximum participation of women in international competitions, Malhotra said, "With a view to encourage more number of women participation in various competitions, AAI would make their participation mandatory for all member state associations/units."

PTI

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