Rijiju: There will be no shortage of funds for NSFs

The union sports minister assured that there will be no shortage of funds for the National Sports Federations, despite the government slashing allocation in an Olympic year.

The government has given a substantial hike to its flagship Khelo India programme but reduced allocation to the NSFs.   -  PTI Photo

The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) may have invited former India captain Sourav Ganguly to be the Goodwill Ambassador of the Indian contingent at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics but Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju counts every person representing India in the same role.

"For me, every Indian has to be an ambassador for the Olympics because it is a platform which determines which country stands where in sports,” he said here on Wednesday. “I'm not looking for one or two persons. IOA is an independent body but as a government I look forward to every Indian as an ambassador."

Speaking on various issues, the Union Sports Minister reassured the sports fraternity there was no slashing of the funds. “If there are shortage of funds for the federations, these can always be taken up, that is why there is a provision for revision. If they need more money, they will get more money," Rijiju said.

Rijiju insisted, “You are looking from a different angle. Whatever we got in the last budget allocation, we had a jump of more than 50 %. What you are comparing from the Revised Estimate (RE), if you see the original allocation in last budget, it is a historical jump. You have to see from the actual stand point, then you will get the complete picture."

The Sports Minister also spoke on the inaugural Khelo India University Games, featuring 177 institutes and 3340 athletes, to be held at the KIIT University Campus in Bhubaneswar from February 22 to March 1.

"I am excited to see the huge shift in the way we organise sporting events in India. Now we are going to have Khelo India University Games. It would happen on a mega scale, it would not be like what we used to see, where each university used to host one discipline. Around the world, the standard of University Games is high, most Olympic stars come from here. Because the age bar is higher than Youth games, the standard will be higher and we will see many champions."