Andheri residents battle to save YMCA basketball court | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Andheri residents battle to save YMCA basketball court

mumbai Updated: Sep 15, 2012 01:51 IST
Bhavya Dore
Bhavya Dore
Hindustan Times
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A patch of land in Andheri has become a battleground for residents who are fighting to save their local basketball court.

More than 200 students have signed up to save the YMCA basketball court from what they claim is the organisation's plan to build a swimming pool instead.

Those who play there, including state and national level players, fear the potential loss of the court, as they say it is the only freely accessible court in the Bandra to Borivli stretch. Incidentally, basketball first developed in a YMCA in Massachusetts.

"It will ruin our lives if it is shut," said Ritika Srivastava, 17, who plays for the Mumbai (North) team, and who galvanised young players to help save it.

The students plan to present the list of names to MP Gurudas Kamat, whose office is adjacent to the court. The fight for the court began in April when rumours first circulated that it would be shut.

"There has been some thinking, but nothing has been finalised so far," said Ebenezer Simeon, general secretary, YMCA. "Basketball will not be affected. We have invented the sport, why would we let it suffer?"

However, players and residents are concerned. "I am not against a pool, but why can't both co-exist?" said Rajesh Srivastava, a former India player.