India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has requested the Haryana government for a plot of land to set up a sports academy-cum-educational institute in the state.
Dhoni has written to the Haryana chief minister, Bhupinder Singh Hooda, in this regard, though he has not specified where he wants the land or whether it will cater to only cricketers or sportspersons from other disciplines.
Looking at request
The chief minister’s office has forwarded Dhoni's request to the state sports department. The India skipper has also requested the Jharkhand government for land for setting up a sports academy.
“Dhoni has sought land from the state government for setting up a sports academy-cum-educational institute. The sports department has asked him to submit the project details. Once we get the details, the case will be pursued,” said a senior official in the Jharkhand chief minister’s office.
In 2008, the Haryana government had leased out 23 acres to India opener Virender Sehwag in Jhajjar's Silani Kesho village for setting up a cricket academy-cum-school.
The panchayat land was leased out at a highly concessional rate of R3 lakh per annum with the provision of a 5% escalation annually, even though Sehwag has never represented the state. Kapil Dev, who is from Haryana, had also requested the govt for land for a cricket academy but his request was turned down.
“It's good that Haryana is offering land for academies, but they should also see for which sport it will be used. Cricketers already have a lot of money and the infrastructure too is well developed. So, I fail to understand why they need subsidy.
Haryana has emerged as a powerhouse in Olympic disciplines and the government should nurture them,” said former India volleyball captain, Amir Singh.