To provide further impetus to sports activity and develop sports culture, Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal on Tuesday gave in-principle approval to setting up of the Sports Authority of Punjab (SAP) that will administer various centres of sports excellence in the state.
The state government has also decided to build special kabaddi stadia in various districts.
Reviewing the sports infrastructure and training facilities in the state, Sukhbir approved the setting up of the Directorate of Sports Authority of Punjab headed by a director general and governing council to administer dif ferent branches of the authority.
The SAP would be responsible for implementing the vision of the state government to train the potential sports players free of cost and to develop sports culture in the state besides controlling centres of excellence to be established at Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Patiala, Hoshiarpur, SAS Nagar and Badal village.
Sukhbir said Rs. 100 crore had been earmarked for setting up these specialised sports centres having residential facilities for budding players. The centres of excellence in six districts would provide free training facilities to the players in athletics, badminton, basketball, boxing, cycling, football, gymnastics, hockey, kabaddi, shooting and wrestling for which the SAP would get services of experienced Olympians and foreign coaches.
Taking stock of the required infrastructure, maintenance and training facilities in these sports centres, Sukhbir said special hostels with all residential facilities would be set up separately for men and women players. The budding players under the age of 14 would be selected for the sports centres to provide excellent coaching.