Kerala to press the pedal on sports: Chandy
news Saturday, February 14, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute | February 14, 2015 | 5.15 pm IST A new sports policy, a sports university and numerous sops for athletes and coaches are on the anvil in Kerala, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said here Saturday. Chandy made this announcement at the Games Village that hosted around 5,000 athletes and officials during the 35th National Games that concluded Friday. Kerala finished second with Services taking the first place. "After the stupendous success of the National Games, we have decided to constitute a five-member committee of top officials to formulate a new sports policy for the Kerala government which they will submit in a month's time," said Chandy. A new sports university will be set up with the support of the central government. This was announced by union sports minister Sarbananda Sonowal when he took part in the inaugural function of the Games here Jan 31. "A new sports school and college will begin in the coming academic year and admission will be open to only people who excel in sports and games," said Chandy. "We will honour our budding sports talents by giving them government jobs. Also, 250 new posts will be immediately created for this. All those government officials who won medals in the present National Games will get either an increment or a grade promotion, depending on which they choose," said Chandy. Those who won gold in the present Games will get Rs.5 lakhs, silver medal winners Rs.3 lakhs while bronze medal winners will be given Rs. two lakhs. The coaches will also be honoured. "We will soon entrust the newly created sports stadia (around 24) to bodies like the Kerala State Sports Council, Kerala Police, State Sports Directorates and district collectors for their upkeep and maintenance as well as to allow interested people to use the facilities," said Chandy. He also pointed out that any person from Kerala who is selected to represent India in the Olympics, will be given a gazetted job immediately. "We have also announced a cash prize of Rs.10 million to winners from here in the 2016 Olympics and Rs.5 million to winners in the upcoming Asian and Commonwealth Games," added Chandy. Indian Olympic Association (IOA) President N. Ramachandran said they will be glad to organise their future competitions in Kerala.