CM Naveen Patnaik Unveils Barabati Stadium Redevelopment and Extensive Cricket Development Plan for Odisha

In a significant stride towards fostering cricketing talent and bolstering sports infrastructure across Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik spearheaded a monumental announcement, laying the foundation stone for the redevelopment of the iconic Barabati Cricket Stadium and inaugurating 41 cricket academies via video conferencing on Tuesday.

Redevelopment of Barabati Stadium and VSS Cricket Stadium

Patnaik’s visionary plan encompasses transforming the Barabati Cricket Stadium into a state-of-the-art sports complex through a collaborative effort with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Odisha Cricket Association (OCA), and corporate partners. The project aims to modernize the stadium while preserving its historical significance, exemplified by the conservation of the iconic Clock Tower. Simultaneously, the VSS Stadium in Sambalpur is slated for expansion and enhancement, promising top-notch facilities for aspiring cricketers in the region.

Expansion of Cricket Facilities and Naming of Stadiums

Under Patnaik’s leadership, cricket facilities were inaugurated at various locations including the Berhampur Sports Complex, Shree Jagannath Cricket Stadium & Women’s Cricket Academy in Puri, Sports Complex in Jajpur, Cricket Ground in Jharsuguda, and 41 cricket academies established by the Odisha Cricket Association. Notably, the stadium in Berhampur will be christened as Mahatma Gandhi Cricket Stadium, paying homage to Gandhiji’s historic visit during the freedom movement.

Integrated Sports Complexes and Weightlifting Academy

The Chief Minister’s vision extends beyond cricket, with plans underway for an Integrated Sports Complex in Sitalapalli, Berhampur, catering to a spectrum of sports including athletics, football, and indoor games. Patnaik inaugurated the Ganjam Weightlifting Academy, featuring a 200-bed hostel, solidifying its status as the largest weightlifting training facility in the country, a testament to Ganjam’s rich sporting heritage.

Expansion of Sports Infrastructure

Jajpur witnessed a surge in sports infrastructure with the inauguration of the Kusuma Complex Swimming Pool, Hockey Training Centre, multipurpose indoor stadium, athletic track, and football ground. Additionally, the foundation stones for a Rugby ground and cricket grounds were laid, alongside hostel facilities. Furthering the agenda of sports development, Patnaik laid the foundation stones for Integrated Sports Complexes in Bargarh and Dhenkanal, aiming to provide comprehensive facilities for various sporting disciplines.

Empowering Youth through Sports

Speaking at the event, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik reiterated the government’s commitment to nurturing sporting talent, highlighting cricket as a focal point for creating a conducive ecosystem for future champions. He emphasized sports as a priority area for youth empowerment, propelling Odisha into the spotlight as a premier destination for sporting excellence.

 Patnaik’s comprehensive plan, unveiled amidst the participation of cricketers and sports enthusiasts across 50 venues, signifies a watershed moment in Odisha’s sporting landscape, promising to ignite a passion for sports among the youth and pave the way for a brighter, more active future.

(With inputs from agencies)

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