Badminton, table tennis and swimming are in for a big push in Goa with the inauguration of the Khelo India State Centre of Excellence in Panjim.
The centre for excellence will nurture talents in these three disciplines and to further this the government has appointed some of the finest coaches and trainers from across the country.
At the inauguration of the centre on July 15, Friday, Sports Minister Govind Gaude in a spirited speech said "now that the centre of excellence is in place, nothing can stop Goa from producing champions at the international level."
Sports infra refurbished
To ensure that Goa doesn't lag behind in keeping up with the commitment of the nationwide Khelo India movement, the State government has refurbished the Campal indoor stadium run by the Sports Authority of Goa.
It also inaugurated the Campal swimming pool after almost three years of slow-paced renovation work. However, it is not complete in all respects. There is still work to be done on the diving section and the crowd gallery of the pool. Even though, the pool was inaugurated, sources said it will be sometime before it is thrown open to the public due to some technical reasons.
What is Khelo India?
Khelo India, which translates to 'Let's play India', was proposed by the Centre in 2017 to revive the country's sporting culture by engaging with children at the grassroots level. The initiative also focused on building better sporting infrastructure and academies across the country for various sports disciplines. The Khelo India campaign aims at identifying talent and nurturing it with the backing of top-notch sports infrastructure.
Objective: Train budding talent
The khelo excellence centres have been shortlisted based on training facilities available with the states. The officials and stakeholders are tasked with identifying the best sports facilities that could be developed into world-class sporting centres. Talented players identified in priority sports disciplines at various levels by a special panel will be provided annual financial assistance of Rs 5 lakh per annum for eight years.