Khelo India State Centres of Excellence to enhance India’s Olympic performance: Union Minister Kiren Rijiju

Khelo India State Centres of Excellence to enhance India’s Olympic performance: Union Minister Kiren Rijiju

New Delhi: The Sports Ministry will be establishing Khelo India State Centres of Excellence (KISCE) under the ministry’s flagship, Khelo India Scheme in order to give world-class sporting facilities to athletes to enhance their Olympic performances. One KISCE will be identified in each state and union territory, with an effort to create a robust sporting ecosystem in the entire country.

In the first leg, the Ministry has identified state-owned sports facilities in eight states of India, including, Karnataka, Odisha, Kerala, Telengana and the North East states of Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland which will be upgraded into Khelo India State Centre of Excellence (KISCE).

Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, Kiren Rijiju took to twitter said, “Sports Ministry has decided to establish one Khelo India State Level Center of Excellence in every state, UT. In the first phase, sports facilities have been identified in Odisha, Karnataka, Kerala, Telengana, Mizoram, Manipur, Arunachal, Nagaland. I’m happy to announce the list.”

In the first batch, the sporting facilities will be upgraded to Khelo India State Centre of Excellence are: Sangey Lhaden Sports Academy, Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh, Jaiprakash Narayan National Youth Center, Bangalore, Karanataka, GV Raja Sr. Secondary Sports School, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, Khuman Lampak Sports Complex, Imphal, Manipur, Rajiv Gandhi Stadium, Aizawl, Mizoram, State Sports Academy, IG Stadium, Kohima, Nagaland, Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneshwar, Odisha and Regional Sports School, Hakimpet, Telangana.

The process of selection of these sports facilities was started in October 2019. Of the 15 proposals received and examined, 8 have been shortlisted based on the training facilities available in priority sports, infrastructure facilities and champion produced by the centre.

Speaking about this initiative of strengthening sporting facilities in the states, Kiren Rijiju said, “The Khelo India State Centre of Excellence are being established to strengthen India’s pursuit for excellence in Ölympics.”

He said, “Our effort is to scale up the best sporting facilities available in each state in India into academies of world-class standard, where athletes from all over the country will want to train in their specific discipline.”

In order to upgrade the existing centre to the KISCE, the Government will extend a ‘Viability Gap Funding’ in sports science and technology support for sports disciplines practiced at the centre and also bridge the gaps in requirement of sports equipment, expert coaches and high performance managers. The support extended will be to Olympic sports, though support can be extended in sports science and allied fields in other sporting disciplines being run in the centre.

“The sporting facilities have been identified after in-depth analysis by a government committee. I am confident that this is a step in the right direction to tap talent from across the country and train them into elite athletes who can win medals for the country in all major international tournaments, and specifically the Olympics,” Rijiju added.

The State and UT will run the centre and build capacity to turn it into the world-class sporting facility, and will be responsible for all aspects of management of the centre including, boarding, lodging and maintenance, while funds for critical gaps such as expert coaches, support staff, equipment, infrastructure will be extended through the Khelo India Scheme.

The eight centres will be given a grant based on the actual amount finalised as per the requirement indicated after a comprehensive gap analysis study. In a bid to broad-base talent identification, the States and UTs will also identify and develop talent in each sport for which funding is received at the centre.

The Sports Authority of India will extend expertise, resources and a monitoring system to ensure that the level of performance of the athletes improve to international standards.

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