Earlier this year Shri Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore had asked states to adopt the National Sports Code in order to achieve best results. “This (Sports code) will go a long way to free the state/district level sports bodies, which are run as fiefdom by a few bureaucrats/ politicians, etc and contribute significantly for the development of sports in the country”, the Minister had written in his letter. Some States such as Uttarakhand took cognisance of the Sports Minister’s initiative and implemented the code in their States. I had written letters earlier to Government and G.O.A but these were not taken note of. I will be writing to them once again on this subject matter as despite the Union Minister’s initiative, there is no willingness to adopt good governance principles.
It is sad that Goa Olympic Association, which is the umbrella body of State level Associations, has not adopted the code. More so because it is headed by a Central Minister, Shripad Naik. On the one hand the Union Sports Minister Rathore has asked States to enforce the provisions of the code and wants to create a momentum of good governance for sports persons, on the other hand his own colleague Minister is taking a reverse stand. This is extremely sad and a regressive step. Technically, the matter should have been brought up before the G.O.A General Body but same was never convened. An Executive committee whose tenure had expired has announced elections keeping the general body in the dark. The present Secretary General, Mr Gurudatta Bhakta has completed his three terms. Will the Government permit him to contest for yet another term, when the Union Minister has himself asked States to implement the code?
Procedures followed are wrong but nevertheless, my association has urged me to go ahead and I am contesting the elections as I believe I can contribute to carry the Sports movement in Goa forward. I have filed my nomination for two posts, Secretary General and Vice President, in the Executive Council of Goa Olympic Association.
Panel politics is not healthy for the growth of the game. G.O.A, I believe, must have a larger role to play other than restricting itself to National Games and Lusofonia. Whosoever is actively involved and has the time, passion and commitment to carry the objects of the Olympic movement forward, I believe they need to be encouraged. Over last many years, I have been involved in multiple sports, have been part of organising committees in those bodies and enjoy good friendly relations with them all.
Organising State Games, assisting member Associations and budding Sports persons in procedural, administrative and promotional matters, felicitation of talented athletes and achievers, having an independent office or an Olympic Bhavan, celebrating days of National importance such as Sports Day, and creating a positive environment and movement for Sports in Goa are some of the initiatives which I feel need to be done. I believe I can contribute and work in that direction along with other devoted members to ensure that G.O.A has a more active role in uplifting sports in Goa.
Our Association is one of the most active associations in Goa and our members have assured me good support. Likewise, response from other associations is positive and encouraging.
I have hence filed my nomination so that I can contribute positively. My aim is to make a positive difference and achieve objectives of good governance and transparency. Looking forward towards everyone’s support and my best wishes to all others who are contesting.
(The writer is a honorary secretary of Goa Badminton Association and a sports promoter, views expressed in the article are writer’s own)