Role of State in Developing Sports in India

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Today sports emerge as multi billion dollar industry. The structural development of sports took place over the last 150 years. The state has an important role to play for the development of sports in any country. Active participation in sports reduces heath hazards, reduces the medical expenditure and encourages team work,Role of State in Developing Sports in India Articles coordination and cooperation. It also helps to create social networks. Sport can be considered as a platform to gain nation pride at the international level, to generate employment, to build infrastructure, to attract foreign tourist and therefore foreign capital. It can be said that sport contributes to the social development as well as the economic development of a country and therefore the role of state for the promotion and development of sports is important.

1982 was a landmark year in Indian sports when India organizes the Asian Games. Prior to 1982, hardly any emphasis had been given to sports in Public Policies. Funds had been allocated to sports in different Five Year Plans, mainly for building infrastructure and nurturing talents at the grass root level.

Five Year Plans

Thrust Areas

2nd Five Year Plan

Developing sports infrastructure

3rd Five Year Plan

Grass root developmental activities

4th Five Year Plan

Grass root developmental activities

5th Five Year Plan

Carried forward the initiatives of 4th Five Year Plan

6th Five Year Plan

Selecting and nurturing young sporting talents across the country

7th Five Year Plan

Building sports infrastructure at the grass root level

8th Five Year Plan

Consolidating the initiatives adopted in the 7th Five Year Plan by introducing a number of schemes, such as Special Area Games (SAG), Sports Project Development Area Centres (SPDA etc.)

9th Five Year Plan

Developing sports talents

10th Five Year Plan

Making the Comprehensive Sports Policy with three main objectives: “Sports for All”, “Excellence in Sports” and “Contingent Constitutional, Legal and Institutional measures to implement the policy”.

(Source: India…get, set, go… The evolving sports ecosystem in India, March 2010

:Ernst & Young)

An increase in allocation of funds for Sports in different Five Year Plans can be observed from the following table:

Five Year Plans

Allocation (INR billion)

1980- 1985

0.27

1985- 1989

1.07

1992-1997

2.1

1997- 2002

4.73

2002- 2007

11.45

2007-2012

46.35

(Source: India…get, set, go… The evolving sports ecosystem in India, March 2010

:Ernst & Young)

In spite of a significant increase in the allocation of funds in sports, it is important to note that only 0.60 % of the union budget for 2009-10 was allocated to Sports. Hence, there is a scope of improvement in terms of fund allocation for the promotion and development of Sports.

The development of sports is an important aspect for youth development and youth development is important for the development of the nation. Keeping in mind the developmental aspect of sports, the Panchyat Yuva Krida Aur Khel Abhiyan (PYKKA) has been introduced to generate sports culture at the grass root level. The objective of the scheme are to provide sports infrastructure/ equipments at the Panchyat level and to encourage youth in rural areas to participate in sports by organizing competition from block level to national level. Rs. 1,500 crore has been approved by the Planning Commission for the 11th Five Year Plan and a budgetary allocation of Rs. 92 crore was provided in the scheme for 2008-09 while Rs. 160 crore has been provided for 2009-10.

Despite of efforts of the Government, it is pertinent to mention that out of 770 million (estimated) populations of citizens below the age of 35 years, only 50 million (approximate) has access to organized sports and games (India…get, set, go… The evolving sports ecosystem in India, March 2010: Ernst & Young). Therefore, the allocation of fund to sport, as a percentage of budget, can be increased for broad-basing sport. The evaluation of the success of the project, initiated by the Government is of equal importance. The integration of sports with education is a must for introducing sports culture in India. Sports is state subject and therefore uniformity in sports specific activities of various states in India is extremely important for providing equal sporting opportunities to all the citizens of the country.

The sports infrastructure in India is developing because of the execution of a number of mega-events in the country, including the Commonwealth Games 2010.The performance of Indian athletes at the international level is gradually improving and the trend of taking up sports as a career is also being observed. This is the right time for India to emerge as a sporting nation and the role of the State in achieving this objective becomes extremely crucial.

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