Of dust and darkness

ASAVARI SHARMA

Members of SAG’s Khokhra sports complex complains about poor condition of the badminton court.

While Gujarat government is taking initiatives to develop a sports culture in the state,its officials seem to have forgotten the basic tenet to make efforts a success – the maintenance of the sports facilities. Highlighting the same, some members of Sports Authority of Gujarat’s Khokhra Sports Complex complained to SAG Director General Vikas Sahay while raising the issue of the condition of the badminton court as well as parking arrangement.

From dead pigeon to ‘pooped up’ seating area, coupled with lack of proper lighting , Khokhra complex has it all.

Talking to Mirror, Hitesh Patel, who is using the facility for past three years, said, “There is pigeon poop everywhere and there is no proper arrangement for drinking water. Some of the lights do not function and you can see dust everywhere.” Another member Ketan Kapadia said, “We even contributed money to put nets in the court to stop the pigeons from coming inside. It’s the authority’s job but they are lax in their approach.”

The members also complained about not having an appropriate parking space that led to situations when the cops had to be called.
“We have to park our cars outside the complex which is unsafe. My car got damaged once. Who will pay for it?” Hitesh said. Another member, Jayant Patwa, echoed the sentiments. “Despite the space, we have to park on road. There are many slums around the area and then they fiddle with the cars, like puncturing the tyres,” he said.

The situation became so worse that a few days back, traffic Assistant Sub Inspector Maganbhai Parmar had to be called early in the morning. “There was some dispute regarding the parking space. I advised them to take the matter to the DCP traffic,” Maganbhai added.  “There was some dispute regarding the parking space. I advised them to take the matter to the DCP traffic,” Maganbhai added.

TWIST IN THE TALE 

However, senior coach at the complex Jivan Gangar had a different story. “We are planning to start badminton coaching for children under the Centre of Excellence scheme of the state government. Now that they (the members) will have to share the court with the kids, they are making all the noises,” he said.
On the cleanliness issue, Gangar passed the buck to the cleaning staff. “We have employed five people for cleaning the court. They (the users) only keep it dirty. Why are they blaming us?” he said. On the problem of lighting, he said, “We have spoken to Torrent, the service provider, to look into the issue. Since we don’t have a sub-station, the voltage fluctuates and that leads to bulb fuse. But this will be taken care of soon.”

On the problem of parking, Gangar said, “It’s the government’s orders to not allow anyone to park inside the complex. Only clerical people and some staff who have cycles or bikes can park.” Putting the blame on the members, he said that SAG has nothing to hide.“They are an arrogant lot who are putting stress on us. We have nothing to hide.”

“We are planning to start badminton coaching for children under the Centre of Excellence scheme of the state government. Now that they (the members) will have to share the court with the kids, they are making all the noises” – JIVAN GANGAR, Senior Coach.

Published by Ahmedabad Mirror (Times Group) on May 8, 2013.

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