Sports to get Rs21m more this year
KARACHI: Sports continue to remain low in Pakistan government’s priority list as only Rs631 million was allocated to the Recreation and Sporting Services in the national budget, just a slight increase from last year’s budget of Rs610 million.
Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) Administrator Azam Dar said that while the government is allocating funds for sports as much as it could, its priority should also be to renovate and maintain the Pakistan Sports Complex in Islamabad which has hosted two international South Asian Events in 1989 and 2004.
“There isn’t any significant increase, but the government can only give away as much as it can,” Dar told The Express Tribune. “We receive supplementary grants and funds for development as well. I feel one of the first things we need to do is improve the Pakistan Sports Complex and the existing facilities before making new projects.”
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He added that there are four ongoing schemes, while two more developmental schemes will be on the cards for this year.
“We also set aside the funds for youth development each year,” said Dar. “Mostly we try to use it as effectively as possible. This year too, we’ll try to utilise the amount in the best way we can.”
This year, the amount will go into ongoing projects including a biomechanics lab at the Pakistan Sports Complex, while Rs50 million may go into the National Games. The PSB will also be investing in synthetic hockey turfs, allocating Rs50 million for laying the turfs in different cities.
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The provincial governments will also announce their budgets in the following days.
According to Dar, the provincial sports board receives money from the provincial governments directly; therefore, that amount is not included in the Rs631 million.