Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik laid the foundation stone for the renovation of the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack via video conferencing on Tuesday.

This apart, Patnaik also inaugurated as many as 41 cricket academies in 30 districts across the State.

Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan, former spinner Pragyan Ojha, former pacer Debashish Mohanty, IPL chairman Arun Singh Dhamal, and members of the Odisha Cricket Association (OCA) were present during the foundation stone-laying event.

As per reports, the Odisha government has set a target to redevelop the Barabati Stadium into a world-class sports complex with all modern facilities. A budget of around Rs 700 crore has been earmarked for the project.

The audience capacity of the stadium will be increased from 42,000 to 60,000. Following a green signal by the BCCI, OCA has prepared a Detailed Project Report (DPR) in this regard.

“Barabati stadium will be redeveloped into a World-class sports complex with all modern facilities in partnership with BCCI, OCA, and corporates. At the same time, considering the legacy of the stadium, the iconic clock tower will be preserved as a heritage structure. The VSS stadium in Sambalpur will be expanded and developed with the best cricket facilities for the cricketers in the region,” said Patnaik on the occasion.

“We are going to build an international-standard stadium in a joint partnership between the Odisha government, BCCI, and the Odisha Olympic Association,” said OCA Secretary Sanjay Behera.

“The vision regarding cricket and other sports jointly prepared by the OCA and the State government will take Odisha cricketers and all other sportspersons a long way forward,” said Irfan Pathan.