After bearing the brunt of being turned into dump yard and becoming drug addicts’ hub, custodians of the city central Polo Ground, J&K State Sports Council (JKSSC) have now rented out the field for month long trade exhibition.
Normally meant for the sports purpose, JKSSC every now and then rents out its fields for the trade exhibition and this time it has allotted Polo Ground for the month long exhibition. Initially JKSSC tried to earn some money for themselves out of the practice. However, lately, JKSSC in particular and sports departments in general have been boosted by huge amount of money from Central Government that amount in crores.
“I am feeling ashamed to be associated with the JKSSC which rents out its fields for earning money. They every now and then claim that these crores and that crores have been granted to JK and still go after some rupees by renting out fields,” said Rifat Abdullah who is JKSSC standing committee member.
“Only a month earlier JKSSC and its higher ups were crying helplessness after Traffic Police department had turned field into dump yard for seized vehicles. It took lot of efforts from sports loving persons and through media campaign to get it vacated. However, now the custodians, JKSSC have themselves turned out as villains by renting out the field for trade exhibition. I believe fields cannot be used for other than sports propose and JKSSC has itself violated the rule,” he added.
J&K Sports Development Association President and former JKSSC member, Bashir Ahmad Malik said that Sports Council has failed in its porpoise for which it was created.
“I have long back said that sports Council has failed for which purpose it was created. Its main objective was player welfare and development of sports infrastructure. In both cases it has failed miserably,” Malik said.
“I fail to understand with which logic sports council has allowed exhibition to be held in its field. They should have categorically rejected the request. The other point is that Srinagar city is reeling under tremendous traffic congestion due to closure of Jehangir Chowk and Rambagh road. To allow such a big exhibition to be held in heart of city will only worsen things,” he added.
When contacted, Secretary Sports Council, Jawaid Shah said that the custodian body of the field has only rented out non playing area.
“In every field there is playing and non playing area. In Polo Ground we have rented out non playing area for the exhibition. There is clear cut direction from High Court not to allow playing areas for anything other than sports activities. We are following that direction and have only rented out non playing area,” Secretary said.