Odisha enhances budget allocation for sports sector by 34%

The budget of the Sports and Youth Services Department has been increased from Rs 911 crore in 2022-23 to Rs 1,217 crore in 2023-24.

Bhubaneswar: To further strengthen its sports infrastructure, the Odisha government has enhanced the allocation for sports sector by 34 per cent in the budget for 2023-24 over the last year.

The budget of the Sports and Youth Services Department has been increased from Rs 911 crore in 2022-23 to Rs 1,217 crore in 2023-24.

Sports has been one of the priority sectors of the government over the last decade. With an aim to give a fillip to the sports sector in the state, the government has over the past few years significantly enhanced the budgetary allocation dedicated to infrastructure development, coaching, competitions and hosting major sporting events, officials said.

The budget of the Sports department has been increased by almost eight times from Rs 149 crore in 2017-18.

“In recent years, sports has created a new and unique identity for Odisha. Our state is being recognized as a major sports destination in the country. Sports has become one of the pillars of New Odisha,” said Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari in his budget speech.

For the first time, the World Cup was held consecutively in the same host nation. Further, this edition was organised in two venues- Bhubaneswar and Rourkela, he said, adding, the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium, Rourkela was built within a short period of 15 months while the 225-room World Cup Village was constructed within 9 months.

Pujari said that the 89 multipurpose indoor stadiums in the urban areas have almost been completed and will be operationalised in the coming months.

“We are building 21 astroturf-based hockey training centres, swimming training centres, weightlifting training centres, football training centres, gymnastics training centres etc.,” he added.

Besides, he said, regional sports complexes are coming up in cities like Rourkela, Puri, Berhampur, Jeypore, Jharsuguda, Jajpur, Keonjhar etc.

Odisha is one of the few states which is investing in sports at this scale. An amount of Rs 1,044 crore has been allocated for development of different sports infrastructure in the state while a sum of Rs 30 crore earmarked for training and coaching under different sports disciplines.

Similarly, Rs 24 crore has been allocated for organizing various sports competitions. In order to encourage the sports persons of the state and to motivate them for winning medals at various national and international sports competitions, Rs 10 crore has been provisioned under the scheme “Incentives and Awards”.


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