A workshop on “Andhra Pradesh: India’s Sports Capital for Next Gen Champions” was organised at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi by Centre for Strategy and Leadership (CSL) in association with APCRDA Government of Andhra Pradesh.
Andhra Pradesh is building a world-class Sports City within its upcoming new capital Amaravati with the vision to host India’s first Olympic Games. “Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu has taken up this task upon himself to ensure that top class sporting complexes and facilities are developed which are needed to qualify to host Olympic Games. Once the Sports City is ready, Amaravati will be the first city in India to host the Olympic Games,” said Sreedhar Cherukuri, Commissioner, Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority (APCRDA). APCRDA is the nodal agency which is developing Amaravati.
“We are developing Sports City in Amaravati which will come in three phases and will comprise integrated sports hub spread in 20 acres with an estimated cost of Rs 1,400 crore, a multi-purpose sports stadium, multi-purpose training campus. Amaravati International Sports Complex, a Rs 60 crore complex, will also be built on 8.9 acres which will revolutionise sports in Andhra Pradesh. Phase I will be ready by 2021,” said Mr. Cherukuri.
Speaking at the workshop, Indian badminton team's chief coach Pullela Gopichand said Andhra Pradesh government has taken right step in building Sports City which will give a fresh impetus to sporting culture in the country. “All my life I have struggled to get basic sports facilities. I am glad today’s generation don’t have to struggle for this. Sports today has great future. All kids have potential, what is needed is to push them to achieve excellence. We need to ensure that kids taking sports need to be incentivised so that they can lead good life. Kids need to learn discipline and sports is fundamental for this.”
Mr. Gopichand further said: “It is not necessary to create champions, but to create environment where everyone – kids and adults – enjoy sports. Remember sports increases a nation’s happiness index and improves quality of life.”
According to L.V. Subramanyam, Special Chief Secretary, Sports and Youth Affairs, Andhra Pradesh: “We are tying up with prominent global sports developing agencies and also sporting personalities to take part in the development of Sports City. We are creating rehab and injury treatment centre, a first of its kind globally, for treating sports injuries. At least five sports universities that will nurture sports talents. Sports City will also be a hub of water sports and adventure sports.”
“Amaravati, the capital city of the future by the Andhra Pradesh government, under the leadership of Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu is a symbol of sustainable inclusive growth. The futuristic capital is based on land pooling rather than land acquisition, clearly exemplifying the enthusiasm and support from the people of Andhra Pradesh in building this world-class capital. Moreover, Andhra Pradesh government has come out with an exhaustive sports policy which will take the sports to the new level,” said Praveen Prakash, Resident Commissioner, Andhra Pradesh Government.
According to Centre for Strategy and Leadership’s Chief Executive and Director Vikas Sharma: “The global sports industry is in the range of $600-700 billion, of which India accounts for around 7-8%. Keeping in view the opportunities India has in this regards the vision of creating Sports City is to make Amaravati the Centre for sports related activities in India. Sports City will revolutionise sporting and games in India. It will be most-sought-after sporting destination not just in India but globally. It will help nurture sporting talents in urban and rural India.”
Mrs. Bhavna Saxena, IPS, OSD, Economic Development Board, Government of Andhra Pradesh; Mr. Mustafa Ghouse, CEO, JSW Sports; Mr. Siddhartha Upadhyay, Founder & Secretary General, STAIRS, and, Governing Body Member of Sports Authority of India (SAI); Mr. Kishore Taid, Co-founder CEO, Bhaichung Bhutia Football Schools, and Founding Trustee, Indian Football Foundation; Mr. Rakesh Kohli, Chairman, Stag Sports, and Member, Governing Council, Sports Skill Council, and, Ms. Kanthi D. Suresh, Editor in Chief, Power Sportz Tv were also present.