CM reviews Sports, Tourism report card

Bhubaneswar: A day after asking all his ministers to work out a road map for implementation of poll manifesto in next four years, chief minister Naveen Patnaik today reviewed works of two departments.

With completion of one year in his fourth term, Patnaik went through the works of Sports and Youth Affairs, and Tourism and Culture departments on first day. Ministers of the concerned departments and secretaries produced reports before the CM.

Raising cash amount of Biju Patnaik Sports award, doubling the prize money for the encouragement of sports persons achieving in national and international levels, announcement of cash prize of Rs 1 cr for gold winners in Olympics and recruitment of nationally and internationally acclaimed sports persons in police departments were mentioned as success stories of the Sports and Youth Affairs department.

The department also apprised the CM about the successful arrangement of Champions Trophy (hockey) in Bhubaneswar and full cooperation to Odia sprinter Dutee Chand in her hyperandrogenism issue.

However, amid all these achievements, the department was also trapped in some controversies. Some senior women sportspersons had left Bhubaneswar SAI hostel alleging low quality food and restriction to go to religious places. Allegation of bribe for admission in government Physical Education College was also another controversy which was faced by the department.

Similarly, Tourism minister Ashok Panda said special measures have been taken for the propagation of Nabakalebar festival, development of mutt and temples, establishment of tourist police stations and mobile tourist patrolling system at Puri-Konark and Puri-Satapada. Allocation of Rs 52 cr in ‘Prasad’ yojana was also another achievement of the department, the minister said.

On the hand, the department was trapped in the fresh controversy over declaration of Dharmapada award after a gap of seven years. State-centre face-off over Nabakalebar funds, delaying light-sound system at Dhauli and cases of attack on tourists also put the sports department in trouble in last one year of the government.