Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif presided over first meeting of general body of Sports Board Punjab here today which took important decisions and accorded approval to steps regarding promotion of sports activities in the province.
The Chief Minister announced increase of one billion rupees in Sports Endowment Fund and with this increase, the volume of the fund will become one billion thirty crore rupees.
He accorded approval to constitution of Project Management Unit for developing playgrounds throughout the province and Hanif Abbasi will be its head.
The meeting also gave approval to the decision of holding Khadim-e-Punjab Sports Competitions and launching Khadim-e-Punjab Sports Talent Hunt Programme. Addressing the meeting, Shehbaz Sharif said that increase in Sports Endowment Fund will help promote sports and monthly stipends will be given to the players, winning laurels for Pakistan in different sports, from the income of this fund.
He said that the players hoisting the flag of Pakistan at international level are national heroes and their look after and removing their financial difficulties is our responsibility.
He said that youth are bright future of Pakistan and our precious assent and more than 60 percent population of the country comprised youth. Empowering the youth is our responsibility and the youth will be empowered with more investment on them, he added.
He said that a comprehensive policy will have to be evolved and implemented for the promotion of sports activities.
The Chief Minister said that sports activities will be promoted at every level for talent hunt at lower level. He said that players of Pakistan have won laurels for the country and the nation in different sports and their services will be benefited for the promotion of sports activities. He said that there is great talent in the streets and mohallas of the province and there is a need to move this talent forward after its purification.
He said that new talent will be brought forward in consultation with ex-players. Shehbaz Sharif said that 66 playgrounds of the province will be developed during current year out of which, 42 grounds will be reserved for cricket. He said that big playgrounds present in educational institutions will also be developed and floodlights will be installed in these play grounds for holding sports competitions at night.
He said that a sports academy would be established in the province. Issuing directions to take necessary steps for setting up of a sports academy, the Chief Minister said that services of professional coaches be acquired for promoting different sports and imparting training to girls and boys besides public private partnership should also be reviewed for providing sports facilities in the playgrounds. Shehbaz Sharif directed to constitute subcommittees for forwarding sports programmes in a comprehensive manner and said that expert players of relevant sports should be included in these committees. These committees will suggest short, medium and long term steps, he added.
He said that the committees should start their work today in order to take decisions without any delay for empowering the youth. Secretary Sports and DG Sports Board Punjab gave briefing regarding steps being taken in connection with promotion of sports activities.
Provincial Ministers Jahangir Khanzada, Rana Mashhood Ahmed, Syed Raza Ali Gillani, Advisor Dr. Umer Saif, Shiza Fatima Khawaja MNA, Inspector General Police Punjab, Vice Chairman Sports Board Punjab Hanif Abbasi, Mian Muhammad Munir MPA, prominent players Intikhab Alam, Kh. Junaid Aslam, Awais Akbar, concerned secretaries and senior officers were present on the occasion.