Pursuant to the promise made by Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to make Punjab a leading state in sports, the new sports policy being prepared by the sports department will be completed and implemented in this year. It was disclosed by the Sports Minister Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer, in a press statement issued after the marathon meeting held to discuss the draft of the Sports Policy at Punjab Bhavan today.
In the three-hour long meeting with the committee of senior officers and experts, it was emphasized that constructive work should be done to create a sports environment in Punjab and the players and coaches should be encouraged to excel. In the draft, it is proposed that players should get jobs, cash prizes, expansion of the scope of sports tournaments towards awarding cash prizes, finding new talent and provide budding players with a good platform, make schools and colleges the hub of sports, besides starting awards for coaches.
In the sports policy, it is proposed to give priority in jobs to the sportsmen who have made the name of Punjab shine at the National and International levels in the field of sports. It was decided to increase the number of sports tournaments such as Para Games, World Cups held every year or two and prestigious tournaments of different sports with cash prizes awarded to players.
Emphasizing the importance of coaches in the new sports policy, where emphasis will be placed on recruiting new coaches in the department, approval was given in principle to start a state award for coaches on the lines of the Maharaja Ranjit Singh Award given to players. It was deliberated that Maharaja Ranjit Singh Award should be given every year.
In order to create a sports-friendly environment in Punjab, there was a discussion on the preparation of a database-based app and website of players who have won medals at the National and International levels. A portal should be created for the convenience of NRI Punjabis who want to do something for sports in their respective areas. Apart from this, boards related to the players should be installed at the entrance of the villages/cities of the famous players. It was also considered to name the stadiums after the renowned players. It was also considered to open a state of art museum in the state to showcase the sports achievements of Punjab.
The Sports Department was directed to prepare a calendar for the next session 2023-24 keeping in mind the dates of school games and university games so that the dates do not overlap with any other sports competition. Similarly, it was proposed to conduct State level Inter-university games of the universities of the state.
Emphasis was placed on preparing the players for National and International level competitions by creating an elite pool of players from the winners of the ‘Khedan Watan Punjab Deyan’. Similarly, ideas were also discussed about setting up academies for mainstream games. It was also debated to increase sports wing in colleges and schedule time for sports activities in schools.
In the meeting, Principal Secretary Sports Raj Kamal Chaudhuri, Director Sports Rajesh Dhiman, DPI (Colleges) Rajiv Gupta, members of the expert committee Ex DGP Rajdeep Singh Gill, Dronacharya awardee Gurbaksh Singh Sandhu, Vice Chancellor of Maharaja Bhupinder Singh Punjab Sports University Lt. Gen. (Retd.) JS Cheema and Registrar Col. NS Sandhu and Sports Director of Guru Kashi University Talwandi Sabo Dr. Raj Kumar Sharma gave suggestions which were discussed in detail by Sports Minister Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer who decided to hold a committee meeting next week to further consider the draft of the new Sports Policy.
On behalf of Sports Authority of India, Lalit Lohani and Gurinder Kaur, Deputy Director (Colleges) Ashwani Bhalla, Assistant Director (Schools) Sunil Kumar and DSO Gurdeep Kaur were also present in the meeting.
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