Behind the scenes of the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) is a taskforce of 200 volunteers from various colleges of Delhi, who ensure that all goes well during the matches.
Retaining the volunteer programme structure of CWG, the roles of the volunteers have been divided into seven key areas. “The are paid Rs.150 per match and Rs.250 for refreshment, besides a kit, which consists an uniform and basic utility things,” says Sagar Pulkit, director of FLYP, the agency in charge of hiring volunteers. We spoke to three such young people to find out about the off-field action.
As many as 200 young Delhiites are volunteering at the IPL match in areas such as spectator services, venue, press operations, protocol, transport, etc. They were chosen from 1,600 applicants and have also been given Delhi Daredevils’ cap, T-shirts, track pants, water bottle and a utility bag each.
Harpreet Makan, 24 Spectator Services
A chance encounter with the organisers led him to volunteer for IPL. “I was just accompanying my brother, who was looking for internship at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium. The organisers informed that we could apply for volunteering. And after few days, we were selected,” says Harpreet. A die-hard cricket-fan, Harpreet is overjoyed to watch the matches live. Talking about his duties, he says, “I have to take care of the spectators and show them their seat, coordinate with the police and the guards, and distribute promotional goods”. But controlling the crowd is not always an easy task. “Every time, we distribute the promotional goods, the crowd gets frantic. I get nervous but try to maintain my calm,” he says. The two days volunteering has given him some fond memories and also fare amount of tiffs. “Most of the quarrels are about seats”. Recounting his experience, he says. The only regret, “I haven’t met any player”. He is hoping to change his position to be near his favourite players.
Mehak Sachdeva, 19, DU Press Operation Volunteer
For this journalism student, it’s all about learning. “I understand cricket, but I am not a cricket fan,” she says. Interested in sports journalism, Sachdeva claims she is more keen on interacting with the journalists and learning the nuances of sports management. She believes that volunteering experiences will add to her resume. “I had missed the chance to volunteer for CWG, but won’t be missing any more chances,” she says. “IPL, however, is better in terms of coordination and ambience, and the there are volunteers from my college as well.” As press operation, her duties are to access journalists, help them and distribute press releases. The task, she says is comparatively easy, if you can manage well. She hasn’t met any cricketer, but has met many famous journalists. With her eyes set to her target, she has no time to party.
Kashish Malik, 20, Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies, DU, Protocol Volunteer
He had paid (a high amount) to watch the semi-final between India and Pakistan, and now, he has got the chance to watch the action live for free and also meet high profile guests. “I met Mukesh and Neeta Ambani and Robert Vadra,” he gushes. “Along with my colleagues, I escorted them to their seats,” he adds. An avid cricket fan, he had also volunteered for CWG. Accompanied by his friends, Malik cheers loudly for his team every time he gets a chance. “I guess we give a tough competition to the cheer-leaders.” Unlike CWG, the protocol officer’s task is just ushering high profile guests to their seats and looking after their convenience.