Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju on Saturday inaugurated the Khelo India State Centre of Excellence (KISCE) for rowing at the Jammu and Kashmir Sports Council Water Sports Academy here.
At present, the KISCE will focus on rowing and will be provided a first-time grant of Rs 145.16 lakh and an annual recurring grant of Rs 96.17 lakh.
This is one of the two KISCEs from Jammu and Kashmir, with the Maulana Azad Stadium for fencing in Jammu being the other. A consolidated amount of Rs. 5.08 crore has been approved for the two centres.
Rijiju had earlier announced that the Sports Ministry would open a state-of-the-art water sports facility here. All procedures are now in place and the money has been allocated.
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"It's a pleasure to come at the Dal Lake to change the lives of the young sportspersons here. There is a lot of potential and we from the Sports Ministry and J&K Council are doing our best to help the youngsters here," Rijiju said.
"Our Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi has a lot of plans in mind for Jammu & Kashmir. This will be a great opportunity for our future champions," the Minister added.
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Rijiju also announced a host of new competitions in the Valley including a Khelo India women's football league.
"From this year onwards, we will start a Khelo India Women’s football league here and all kinds of support will be given by the Sports Ministry. In October-November, we will organize a marathon competition as well in Pahalgam," Rijiju added.
Currently, there are 24 KISCEs across 23 states and union territories and each of them focuses on Olympics sports.
Rijiju was joined by Lt. Governor of Jammu and Kashmir Manoj Sinha, Advisor to LG of J&K Farooq Khan and Alok Kumar, Secretary, Youth Services, J&K for the ceremony at the Nehru Park in Dal Lake.