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HindustanTimes Thu,21 Aug 2014

Govt indecisive on KU's land offer for Astroturf

Vishal Joshi, Hindustan Times  Kurukshetra, October 20, 2013
First Published: 19:34 IST(20/10/2013) | Last Updated: 19:37 IST(20/10/2013)

Even as Kurukshetra University (KU) has offered its campus land to lay Astroturf to give a boost to budding hockey players, the Haryana government has failed to take a decision.

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In May this year, the KU had volunteered to earmark 8 acres behind the sports complex for the synthetic ground. The university administration had also submitted a detailed project to the state government, but the development project has been kept on the backburner for unspecified reasons.

Following the demand of Kurukshetra Hockey Development Group (KHDG) to promote the sport, KU offered the land to the state government to lay the Astroturf.

The KHDG, brainchild of the Sports Authority of India (SAI), hockey coach Gurvinder Singh in association with a veteran hockey player Subhash Chauhan had started a campaign last year to gather support for the construction of the Astroturf. The volunteers were able to get more than 20,000 signatures during a campaign demanding the facility in the absence of which players were being deprived of standard training and practice.

Hockey lovers said that the Kurukshetra SAI centre had the scope of preparing promising players as at least three had recently undergone training at a national camp at NIS, Patiala.

Nearly 50 players are undergoing training for hockey at Kurukshetra's SAI centre, but they are forced to practice on a grass field.

On May 10, Hindustan Times had reported about the KU's offer.

KU vice-chancellor DDS Sandhu had told HT that the university was an ideal place to have a synthetic turf as it had the infrastructure, including boarding facility, for visiting teams as well.

He had also stated that KU deserved an Astroturf as its team had been struggling hard to maintain the top three slots in various national hockey championships for the past several years.

Chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda was expected to make an announcement at a political rally held at Thanesar here on May 26. But, much to the dislike of the hockey aficionado, no such announcement has been made till date.

Meanwhile, Dalel Singh Chauhan, KU's sports director and an Arjuna Awardee, confirmed to Hindustan Times on Sunday that the university had not received any information about the project from the state government.

“Acceptance of the KU proposal will certainly have a far-reaching impact on the sport. KU is ready with the land and is ready to offer other facilities for its promotion, but we are still waiting for an announcement by the state government in this regard,” Chauhan added.


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