Indian Sports And Development : Whether Sports Authority of India is Stepping Forward or Still Sitting Idle ?

Gyanendro Ningombam *

 Sports Hostels, Indoor Stadium inuagurated at Khuman Lampak Complex :: July 20 2011
Sports Hostels, Indoor Stadium at Khuman Lampak Complex in July 2011

Games and Sports have always been seen as an integral component in all round development of human personality. Achievement in sports has always been a source of national pride and prestige. However, unlike in the past, the modern sports have become highly competitive. The use of modern equipment, infrastructure and advanced scientific support has changed the scenario of sports in international level. Keeping in line with the growing demands in sports, Government of India has taken various befitting steps and initiations in order to ensure Indian sports "an indefatigable Joie de vivre".

Sports Authority of India (SAI), in fact was established by the GOI in the year 1984 as a registered society primarily to ensure effective maintenance and optimum utilization of various sports infrastructure that were built in Delhi during the Asiad 1982. It has now become the nodal agency in the country for broadbased sports and for training of sportspersons' excellence in National and International sports. The Society for National Institute of Physical Education and Sports (SNIPES) was merged with SAI with effect from 1st May 1987.

Subsequently Netaji Subash National Institute of Sports (NSNIS), Patiala and its allied centres at Bangalore, Kolkata, Gandhinagar and Lakshmibai National College of Physical Education at Thiruvanthapuram came under SAI. It has now six regional centres at Bangalore, Gandhinagar, Kolkata, Sonepat, Bhopal and Imphal, and two sub centres at Guwahati and Lukcknow also operate a High Altitude Training Centre (HATC) at Shillong, Himachal Pradesh.

SAI operates various schemes at Sub-Junior, Junior and Senior levels namely, National Sports Talent Contest (NSTC), Army Boys Sports Company (ABSC), SAI Training Centres (STC) and Special Area Games of Excellence (COE) for elite sports persons at each of its Regional Centres and one at National Institute of Sports, Patiala. It is a fact that SAI is the only Government Agency that looks after the development of all Olympic sports. The role of SAI and its mandate is, in fact, to achieve excellence in sports in the country by taking up the following- Broadbase sports, identify talents, nurture players, provide equipment and infrastructure, give them time to time foreign exposure and finally take them to the podium.

But one must remember that sports are always in the "State list" and it is the primary responsibility of the state to take any appropriate action in broadbased sports. State Governments under their department of youth affairs and sports are implementing various schemes on broadbased sports. But I am afraid whether SAI or the State Governments are properly implementing such beautiful schemes in befitting manner or simply adjusting the decision making style of sporting bureaucracy ?

Honestly speaking infrastructure and equipment available in the country's Regional Centre, Sports Training Centre (STCS) and Special Area Games (SAG) Centre are not upto the mark. And in some places, they have coaches but not trainees, it is the other way round. There are also centres where we have coaches and trainees but no infrastructure.

For example - in Imphal centre, there are 50 plus hockey inmates (Boys and Girls) who are not getting proper training only for want of infrastructure. The decade old project for installation new turf inside the SAI complex, Takyelpat has been still keeping undone. I don't know what is the reason behind it. Just consider how sports loving people of this state would greet SAI people if the project is taken up that could also herald yet another era of sports movement in this tiny state.

Here SAI authority must call to mind that the landmark and success would be a huge turn around the term of popularizing hockey in this highly prone state where the trainees are accustomed to taking up this lovely national game. And it would also be an inspiration for the youngsters who have enough potential in exploring their hidden talents.

And one more thing here which is to be clearly discussed in depth is that trainees under Imphal Centre are always seen running on roads, not on running tracks that too in front of coaches, support staff and Director of SAI. I don't know whether they are wholeheartedly marshalling the trainees on to the aspect of achieving excellence or simply operating with the bureaucracy confines ?

There are 55 STCs across the length and breadth of the country. But it is never accesses the need for such facilities. Then How can we expect to achieve excellence and rich fruits in sports ? To my view at this point of time the aim for achieving country's feat should have been better training centres than more training centres. The clamour for more training centers' needs, therefore, to be resisted and benefit analysis should also be made.

At present there are 1400 coaches under SAI doing their best. But in the country of one billion plus population, what can 1400 coaches do ? This has overwhelmed us with wonder ! And in spite of this, there is a severe dearth of qualified coaches in the country. No one is aware of the fact (either Govt. or Govt. nodal agency SAI). They are simply wasting or expending money on hiring qualified foreign coaches.

Keeping in line one would like to know why SAI, the sole authority is so reluctant in sitting up an "Institute of Sports Coaching" in the country in order to avail minimum or maximum qualified coaches of foreign calibre ? However, there is a welcome note that GOI has decided to set up one such institute and its project report in under preparation and hopefully, we will have a plan in place in days to come.

I am really sad to mark here that GOI has disbursed Rs. 160 crore to various National Federations for hiring foreign coaches, buying equipment and foreign trip of athletes. Shouldn't we know how this money has been used and what benefits gained ? I have recently visited some STCs and SAG centres in the eastern region of the country and it has come to understand that no renovation of sports infrastructure have been properly taken up for a pretty long time. And improvements of existing infrastructure in many centres have not done in routine manner. Instead of taking these works on a war footing, they are still taking tall in the name of sports and possessing their "GADDIES".

A pertinent question poses to SAI authority - why they have not taken these steps under first PPP model of sports which is inducted by the GOI. Why SAI has not taken up a positive step to enter into MOU with some agencies like M/S JSW Sports Ltd. who is taking up renovating sports infrastructures in the STC, Hissar. Despite pouring cash awards , appreciations and accolades to the sportspersons who brought laurels of the country why GOI particularly Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports is unwilling in taking initiative to get corporate houses and public sector undertakings to adopt important SAI centres in the country. This will definitely, ensure the unkeep of the infrastructure and their modernization when required.

Here, one can understand that as far as the achievement of excellence in sports in the country is concerned the sports Authority of India should never turned blind in concentrating more on Secial Area Games. SAG centres have always to be the centre for exclusive development of a sports prevalent in a particular area. And I have no hesitation to say that SAI needs to go deeper into North East and Tribal areas who have potentials based on their physical structures in the country to locate talents and pick them for nurturing. And for development of coaching - a frame work for each discipline should be made out whether it is an Olympic sports or a Paralympic sports.

There are five historic Stadia owned by SAI in the country and Govt is investing Rs. 2000 plus crores every year. However, they have not made any revenue out of it. Maintenance of these stadia is simply eating into our precious resources of the country and therefore SAI authority needs to come forward with a concrete model which can generate pretty income from these Stadia.

Now to book to the fray in the highly competitive sporting world we need to formulate a concrete "Long Term Development Plan for Sports" in the country. That, in the plan National Federations could easily be incorporated because in term of broadbased sports in the country there is always an area where National Sports Federations and State Associations or authorities are found wanting. We sincerely need to come out with a "Mission" with a either " Mission for 2020" or "Mission for 2030". Let us not forget SAI is becoming a ground for emerging sportspersons in the country.

* Gyanendro Ningombam wrote this article for Hueiyen Lanpao
The writer is the Editor of Meeyam Evening Daily. He can be reached at gyanendroningombam(at)gmail(dot)com
This article was posted on November 05, 2014.

* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.

  • Tribes, Art & Soul of India #1: Gallery
  • Rally against Mob Lynching #1: Gallery
  • 'Sahnit' an honour or a disgrace
  • Irabot : Socio-Political Challenges
  • Training employees for better governance
  • Blue Ocean :: Poem
  • Sextortion: Making money from shame
  • Condemn murder of Neiphretuo Metsie
  • Social lacunae
  • BJP on poll drive at Imphal, Kohima
  • Mary Kom lost 2 kg in 4 hours
  • Historical Evaluation of Puya Meithaba #2
  • Felicitation of Sportsperson: Gallery
  • ICJ: Investigation of Extrajudicial Killing
  • Legal profession as career option #2
  • Loktak Down Stream HE Project (2x33MW)
  • Protest against mob lynching at DU
  • Ripples of Music :: Poem
  • Memo submitted to CM over lynching
  • Poems of Peace, Resistance ...
  • Helicopter Schedule for Imphal-Jiri
  • Mirabai recommended for Khel Ratna
  • Martyrdom of Haipou Jadonang #3: Gallery
  • Manipur State is still winning..
  • Gazetteer of North-East India :: Book
  • Sunfeast Cup Football Tournament
  • Trip down memory lane
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • Folk Song :: Poem
  • The Endureres at Dwarka Half Marathon
  • Main accused in cop slaying nabbed
  • Naga talks not confined to Nagaland..
  • Trekking to Dzukou Valley #1 : Gallery
  • Rest in Peace Humanity
  • Ph Banti's artwork 'Trafficking of children'
  • Cry of a Dying River - 45 :: Poem
  • Buddhism is not a religion
  • Jobs at R-Square Design
  • The Killing Fields 2013-18 : News Timeline
  • Candle Light at DU over lynching
  • Society as a reflection of govt
  • Mobocracy : Shame on Manipur
  • Kuki Black Day @CCpur : Gallery
  • miAoIbgi pNTuH :: Seireng
  • Apikcha, Apaiba, Tinilung :: eMing
  • An opinion on Tharoijam killing
  • How Manipur lost internal autonomy, Kabaw
  • Admission for PhD at Tripura Univ
  • Meefam ST at Nambol, Khangabok
  • Importance of Forest & Environment
  • Deep social divide: Two different folks?
  • Kuki Black Day: Kukis Will never forget
  • R & V Art House's First Art Fest 2018
  • Celebrating International Literacy Day, 2018
  • Born a Kuki, die a Kuki :: Poem
  • History of North East India :: Book
  • Will SimpliciTB make TB treatment simpler
  • Meefam chathaduna ST gi issue..
  • Dipankar Talukdar- Mr Model of World Star
  • System error- who will fix Broken Window
  • Reshuffle Talks : Say No to Yes Me
  • India negotiating vehicle pact with Myanmar
  • Chalwa Village, Kangpokpi #2 : Gallery
  • Thien & its downfall in Zeliangrong #2
  • Is FA a self exposed daylight robbery?
  • Nation Needs Small Farmers
  • Who is programming you ?
  • Bandhs as dissent & survival of laziest
  • Looking for Raju :: Poem
  • The cry of the 2nd class citizen
  • Bharat Bandh in Imphal
  • Historical Evaluation of Puya Meithaba #1
  • Sit-In: Naga Peace Talk #2 : Gallery
  • Naga-Kuki conflict: Search for definitions
  • Mega Marathon Manipur : Download Form
  • Legal profession as career option
  • Guv felicitates 5 JAK RIF for flood relief
  • Stored Anger :: Book Review
  • On stepping into the 20th year of TSE
  • Sept - month which reinstated our courage
  • Krishna Janma @ISKCON #2 : Gallery
  • Empty :: Poem
  • Lets beat littering - plastics pollution
  • NEHU Seminar : Urbanization in India
  • Jobs at JCRE Skill Solutions
  • Declaration of Naga Collective Spirit [Sep 8]
  • Akanba Khongjangidamak Yathokpa Loire
  • Support for STDC from UMA, Assam
  • 'Deplorable power supply in Nagaland'
  • Tryst with destiny - Should we accept ?
  • Stand off at MU : Impact on LS Poll
  • Exploring the enthralling Tuilha Kol
  • Kamesh Salam : Outstanding Green Activist
  • The Valley Of Brahmaputra :: Book
  • Development of road database
  • The inner page story :: Poem
  • Kakching WW-II Memorial Run 2018
  • STDC public meeting at Langathel Keithel
  • Maibi Jagoi at Sangai Fest : Gallery
  • My poll without prejudice to anyone
  • MEETAC - Mission for streamlining TK
  • Conditions leading to Marxism
  • Heart Camp at Khelakhong, Thoubal
  • Cyber bully: Crime that follows you home
  • Bhupen Hazarika : Tribute at London
  • AEP & Importance of Myanmar & NE
  • Political pandemonium
  • Students central to MU issue
  • Landscape from Koubru #2 : Gallery
  • Leishangthem Robert for Mr. World 2018
  • Oinam Shilla Chanu at Mrs India Earth
  • North-east Frontier Of India :: Book
  • Thien & its downfall in Zeliangrong #1
  • Cry of a Dying River - 44 :: Poem
  • JRF Post at Mizoram University
  • Honours to Bamboo; a ubiquitous gift
  • Case of hunter now being huntedr
  • Chaklam Khongchat Numit #3 : Gallery
  • Women Empowerment & judicial Activism
  • Narin Chenggum - wild edible mushroom
  • Flying Star at your lips :: Poem
  • Out of the box thinking
  • Call centre fraud: Vicious vishing attack
  • Changing India & its impact on Manipur
  • MU stand off gets uglier
  • Tikendrajit : The Lion of Manipur #4
  • Krishna Janma @Mahabali #1 : Gallery
  • Eastern Frontier of India :: Book Review
  • Remembering Radhakrishnan ..
  • Moments to cherish :: Poem
  • Glimpse of the Buddha's teaching
  • NH7 Weekender Express Editions
  • Rejoinder to NDPP from NPF [05 Sep]
  • Mental equation
  • Are teachers teaching ? Apt, timely poser
  • Sirarakhong Hathei Phanit @Ukhrul : Gallery
  • Sit-In: Naga Peace Talk #1 : Gallery
  • Globalization, Act East Policy & Manipur
  • Review on anthology of Parthajit Borah
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • Child Friendly Police Stations proposed
  • ADBU Goes Green with Solar Energy
  • Convocation of Assam Don Bosco
  • Fetal Echocardiography - Seminar held
  • Rejoinder to NPF from NDPP [04 Sep]
  • Divide, divert and rule will not work
  • FA, MU crisis : Issues before LS polls
  • Krishna Janma @ISKCON #1 : Gallery
  • Komrem Student Day @Bangalore : Gallery
  • September Calendar for Year 2018 :: Tools
  • The Coils of Pakhangba :: Book
  • Physics Program in Don Bosco, Tura
  • Condemns MU VC's vindictive stance
  • 'Policy of India to suppress people'
  • NDPP congratulates Abu Metha
  • Pandey back at MU! Violating spirit of MoA
  • Exhibition @ Art College #2: Gallery
  • AMWJU Sit-In-Protest : Gallery
  • Shri Krishna Janmasthami :: Book
  • Life's heck :: Poem
  • Environment & lung health are vital
  • Innovation for the common man
  • Humanitarian crisis with NRC in Assam
  • Rejoinder to NDPP from NPF [02 Sep]
  • Jangou Rah : eRang Classic
  • The Story of 40 Pineapple Suckers
  • Rebirth of Manipur Human Rights Comm
  • Yumkhaibam Nanao Eramdam Yaourakhre
  • Lecture: Governance & Public Services
  • X-rated poem :: Poem
  • Ningol Chakkouba Celebration in Delhi
  • Baton changes hands at IGAR (South)
  • Rejoinder to NPF from NDPP [01 Sept]
  • A Wake-up call
  • Lok Sabha polls : More crucial for BJP
  • Martyrdom of Haipou Jadonang #2: Gallery
  • Chaklam Khongchat Numit #2 : Gallery
  • The World of Kuki People :: Book
  • Effects of the Burning of Meitei Puyas
  • Soil Technician required at MaolKeki
  • Jr. Mr. India 2018, Gyanendra Thokchom
  • Rejoinder to HTC & allies' statement
  • Consensual sex..Does it amount to rape ?
  • Need for all to keep their sanity
  • Sanagi Tenawa :: Funga Wari
  • MU: Den of Insurgents or Den of Ideas?
  • Can NRC Update save Assam and NE ?
  • Victim of Enforced Disappearances
  • Admission for Ph.D. at Tripura University
  • Martyrdom of Haipou Jadonang #1: Gallery
  • Physics Program in Don Bosco College
  • Resolution: Right of Human Right Defender
  • Advancing rights of Human Right Defender
  • Dolaithabi Dam , Senapati : Gallery
  • Eid-Ul-Adhaa Festival #2 : Gallery
  • Chaklam Khongchat Numit #1 : Gallery
  • 47th Nagas Annual Meet at Mumbai
  • Transcending Patriots' Day(s) #4
  • Sangai Fest: Fashion Show #2 : Gallery
  • Tikendrajit : The Lion of Manipur #3
  • Dr. Jodhachandra Sanasam : Sahitya
  • Architects announces 1st MADE 2018
  • Expedite FA Rally #2 : Gallery
  • Billie's Book by Ranjeeta Mayanglambam
  • Shougrakpam Bijaya :: A Profile
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Disputed Myanmar Border Pillar : Gallery
  • Front Page Photo 2018 #3: Gallery
  • Dzuko valley #4 :: 360 Panorama View
  • Manglandasu Nang - OST :: e-pao Radio
  • Temples of Manipur : Gallery
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic