Former national player Joseph Tirkey today held the Indian Hockey Federation responsible for India's failure to qualify for the Olympics for the first time in 80 years.
"The IHF and its head K P S Gill should own responsibility. They owe an explanation to the hockey lovers. This is high time dictatorial attitude is put behind for the betterment of hockey," said Tirkey, a stand-by during the 1982 World Cup.
Tirkey urged the Jharkhand government to take steps in nourishing young hockey talents which could help in supplying fresh talents to the nation.
"Gumla, Khunti and Simdega districts in Jharkhand are the core areas from where the nation got best hockey talents. If the government prepares a blue-print to hone hockey skills then it would be a great service to the nation, now mourning on our debacle," he said.
"I have told Sports Minister Bandhu Tirkey about my views. Let us see what happens," Tirkey said.
Stating that stalwarts like Olympians Sylvanus Dung Dung and Manohar Toppo hailed from this belt, the former East Zone captain said, "The hockey nurseries should have facilities to groom Under-7, Under-17 and Under-20 players, so the same bunch of players who started hockey at the tender Under-7 age would be there in the senior national side by the time they turn twenty," said Tirkey, who captained undivided Bihar team for three consecutive years in early 1980 in the Rangaswami Cup.