Youth body to fight against BCCI stadium plans at Shimla’s historic Annandale

Shimla : The DYFI is set to launch an aggressive campaign this week to save the Annandale ground saying top politicians and land sharks will not be allowed to convert this historic ground in this Himachal Pradesh capital into a BCCI concrete cricket stadium .

“We will fight for opening Annandale to the public instead of making it a fort of golfers and allowing a cricket stadium built here ,” said Balbir Prashar , secretary Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) here Sunday .

The ‘save annandale’ campaign will be formally launched on March 23 , the martyrdom day of Bhagat Singh .

Annandale ground in 1925

“The DYFI will organise a signature campaign to expose both the state government and the HPCA(BCCI) and their motives ,” Prashar said .

“We will campaign for handing over Annandale to the youth who should use it for multiple purposes including public festivals and programmes in the past ,” said Prashar.

“We will expose the nefarious campaign of the BCCI as it is bent to take over the ground and use it for their own interests ,” Prashar warned .

He said the Dharamsala cricket ground had exposed the BCCI’s agenda who don’t even allow the local youth to enter this ground .

“The campaign unleashed to hand over the ground to BCCI smacks of vested interests and tentacles of the land mafia who have not left even the most scenic places in Shimla away from commercial ventures ,” Prashar said .

The DYFI has questioned the state government asking why it has allowed buying of land at the edge of the Annandale ground to powerful business people the next step would be to break all green laws build a cricket stadium here .

Prashar said the youth of the state are convinced the campaign for taking over the Annandale ground is backed by land mafia who have both direct and tacit support from the Dhumal led BJP government .

“How has the BJP government allowed converting of the dense forest surrounding Annandale into a grassland so that land sharks can take over this land ,” said Prashar .

The famous Annandale, since its inception by the British in the 1830s was the haunt of Anglo-Indian playful activities, amusements and entertainments.

It was a place for picnic parties , fetes , fancy fairs races and polo matches and other sports activities .
The Durand cup football was started here in 1888 but was later shifted to Calcutta .

In a 20 year career published widely. He has worked for the BBC, AFP, The Statesman, IANS and the Business Standard . Known for his hard hitting writing and occasional off-beat stories. He lives in Shimla.

6 Comments

  • The stadium should be handed over to the public to be utilised in a proper manner. With Shimla becoming a concrete jungle, there is hardly any open space left for children to play. Why do they want to turn Annadale into a cricket stadium when we already have one eyesore (colour) in Dharmsala? What about lakhs being spent for a stadium near Shimla airport?

  • money money money..thank god there r no plans in the budget for our state except the borders..(yet).. or else they would turn our peaceful land into a hoar… lets hope the rest of india treats us as a hillstation as a retreat for the summers where they loiter and ruckus.. there are no wise to nuture our land..so let us be ignored..

  • This whole idea of stadiun is CRAP..What’s the fun of having a BCCI owned stadium when local youth would not be allowded in side it. Let the Damn Govt. and the main face behind this, the good for nothing HPCCA president know that this is OUR land and people of H.P own it . Shimla hasbeen and is known for its rich natural bounties and not for Cricket Counties !! A blunder done by HP Govt in Dharamshala should be more than an eye opener for the people of H.P . NO MORE WASTAGE OF LAND IN THE NAME OF DEVELOPMENT…Its nothing but developing the Corporates who fund the politicians.. These netas dnt even know the historic facts so what to expect out of them .. But we the people of the Hill should not and would not let this historic place become PRIVATE and out of bounds .

    DOWN WITH THE HPCCA !! DOWN WITH THE STUPID GOVERNMENT OF H.P !!!

  • There already exists the highest Cricket groundin the world at Chail which has not been looked after since independece and can be developed in to a world class stadium. Why the historic Annadale ground?

  • The change of hands from defence to state govt. is welcomed but to convert into concrete cricket stadium is unwarranted and Shimalite should oppose whole heartidly.

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