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No space for sports bodies in new stadia

Eleven months after the Commonwealth Games got over, six national sports federations are yet to get back their offices located inside the stadia. HT reports.

delhi Updated: Sep 23, 2011 01:56 IST
HT Correspondents

Eleven months after the Commonwealth Games got over, six national sports federations are yet to get back their offices located inside the stadia.

In 2009, when the renovation work in the SAI's stadiums began in preparation for the Games, the federations had been asked to vacate their offices and come back once the stadia were ready.

However, for the past two years the six federations - basketball, wrestling, table tennis, Athletics, Indian amateur boxing and badminton - have been operating out of New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC)-owned Palika Place at Panchkuian Road. All six federations are paying R100 per square feet as rent and are now waiting to shift back.

According to a senior official at one of the federations, they have been requesting the sports ministry to give their offices in the stadia back, but the ministry is yet to respond to their requests.

VK Malhotra, acting president of the Indian Olympic Association has also been writing to the sports ministry to re-allot the offices back to the federations. The offices were vacated with the assurance that they can move back once the stadiums are ready

In his letter, he said that the federations were earlier working out of JLN Stadium, Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium, National Stadium and Talkatora Swimming Pool Complex.

"Now that all the stadia have been handed back to the SAI, there are large rooms lying vacant. The sports ministry has put up an advertisement, saying they will allot the buildings to corporates. But these buildings were meant for promoting sports and should be given back to the federations," he told HT.

He added that earlier the Organising Committee was paying for the premises at Panchkuian Road but since the committee has stopped paying the rent, the federations cannot afford the expenses any more. "Most federations were allotted offices at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium after 1982 Asian Games. The CWG should have left behind a legacy of sports but so far there has been no response from the sports ministry on the issue," he added.

However, a senior official at NDMC refuted the claims and said that the federations have taken the offices for a license period of 10 years and are making payments regularly.