Maharashtra's world-class sports university to start in 2021 in Pune
Maharashtra's world-class sports university to start in 2021 in Pune

In a significant step, the Maharashtra government will set up its first world-class international sports university in Pune and it will be functional from the next academic year, 2021-2022, Maharashtra Sports Minister Sunil Kedar said here on Thursday.

The university will bring together the faculties of various sports and games, besides research, training and development to produce national and international-level sportspersons in various disciplines, the minister said.

Kedar said that the sprawling Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex (SCSC) in Balewadi, Pune, would be upgraded to the status of a full-fledged university with initial funding of Rs.400-crore, as announced in the budget.

The SCSC has hosted the 2008 Commonwealth Youth Games, besides several other national and international sporting events and has most of the relevant infrastructure needed for a world-class sports training complex, said Kedar.

"The university will offer courses and research in sports, sports-related science, sports medicine, technology, training and coaching in various disciplines, sports management, sports media and communication and related aspects. All facilities shall be on par with international standards to enable the students and players get quality training and inputs in their chosen sports fields," Kedar explained.

Kedar said that the state has a long sporting tradition and has produced many national and international level sports stars in different sports and games, and will continue to do so with the advent sports university in the future.

"There is a need to improve the quality of sports facilities, develop and nurture national/international level players as well as provide technical manpower in the field of sports by starting courses in various faculties. In this way, job opportunities may be made available in the field of sports in the future," said Kedar.

Of the proposed 216 posts, 166 shall be permanent, including that of the Vice-Chancellor, the Registrar, the university staff, and the various heads of departments, etc. The remaining 47 will be of contractual nature. Besides, top experts and sports legends in various fields will be invited from India and abroad on honorarium or contract basis.

The move follows a report by a committee headed by Dr Vijay Khole, ex-Vice-Chancellor of University of Mumbai, which submitted its draft act to the government on the 'International Sports University, Maharashtra, 2020'.

Last week, the state cabinet presided over by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray approved the draft bill which was passed in the Winter Session of Maharashtra Legislature this week, he added.

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Free Press Journal