Anurag rubbishes Ram Lal’s claims over HPOA poll

Anurag Thakur has turned down all allegations leveled by Ram Lal Thakur, the senior Congress leader over wrongdoings in Himachal Pradesh Olympic Association (HPOA) election. Talking to media persons at Baddi today, Thakur has ridiculed the Congress leader claims to highjack the poll process by using his official power.

He said, Forest Minister J.P. Nadda was elected unanimously with overwhelming support of delegates in poll. The process was rather gone under democratic way, he clarified while terming down any possibility of using unfair mean.

He alleged that during Ram Lal Thakur tenure as President of HPOA the association has touched new low. Now under Nadda’s leadership the HPOA would strive to enhance sports facilities in qualitative and quantitative ways.

To promote sports infrastructure in state,40 crores would be incurred in coming 5-yr, he said. Besides this the stadium would be set up in each district of state involving total budget of 25 crores, he said while ensuring to set up a stadium in Baddi also.

The 4 sports centers would be set up in state to promote the sports like shooting, taekwando, judo and boxing, he said adding an Olympic festival would be celebrated in October month.

1 Comment

  • Although Ram Lal Thakur has no credentials to be HPOA president and he has nothing to show in last 20 years of service but the way this drama happened is unfortunate. Not ad admirer of the whole show but Anurag has some distinction to bring cricket to HP. Deal with crooks the crooked way! But at the end of the day benefit your state and people and its causes.

    Politicians need to stay away from games. And due to them we have only one gold, and our neighbor is leading the tally.
    Rakesh Lohumi of Tribune wrote a nice article on the whole drama.

    Political games in sports arena
    Rakesh Lohumi
    Tribune News Service

    Shimla, August 13
    The overzealous attempts of politicians to penetrate into and control sports bodies is turning play fields into a political battleground in the hill state. The Himachal Pradesh Olympic Association (HPOA) is the latest to be transformed into a political arena with senior Congress leader Ram Lal crossing swords with the BJP duo, comprising forest minister J.P. Nadda and MP Anurag Thakur.

    Although the politicians have been associated with various sports bodies for long, the tendency to grab the top organisational posts and try to remain at the helm by hook or crook was relatively a recent phenomenon.

    The politicians have the typical propensity to cling to the post they are holding and they could go to any extent to achieve this objective. This tendency is being increasingly reflected in sports associations much to the discomfiture of athletes and players who suffer the most in the process.

    Initially, sportspersons took initiative in associating politicians and bureaucrats with sports organisations as patrons just to ensure that they got a good amount as government grant and did not face problems in arranging other facilities like playgrounds, rest houses, and hostel accommodation for conducting tournaments.

    Sports being the last priority of the government, such tactics helped in running the affairs of the fund-starved organisations smoothly.

    However, subsequently the politicians developed a vested interest in controlling the sports bodies and they started indulging in behind-the scene manoeuvres to secure the top posts. In recent years, they have shed all inhibitions in delving into the affairs of the sports bodies, and are taking desperate measures to control these organisations.

    Ram Lal Thakur has been heading the HPOA for almost two decades, and last time when the BJP came to power, the then sports minister, Praveen Sharma, made all efforts to dislodge him. However, Thakur somehow managed to survive. This time election has triggered off a controversy with both Thakur and Nadda claiming unanimous election as president even though the registrar cooperative societies had declared the meeting illegal.

    During the previous term of P.K. Dhumal as Chief Minister, his son Anurag Thakur became the president of the State Cricket Association. The Virbhadra Singh government, which came to power, subsequently, enacted the Sports Act to target him and took legal recourse in the matter. The case is still pending with the high court.

    The BJP had been demanding scrapping of the Act all along, but after coming to power, it had not done so over the past eight months. Instead, it is being used in the case of the HPOA, which is not covered under it.

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