Manipur Chief Minister N Biren handed over the first Olympian Park in Manipur to the people of the state and also felicitated the Manipur Olympians on Friday. Statues of all 19 Manipur Olympians were displayed in the Park.
Constructed with an aim to honor those 19 Manipur Olympians as well as to encourage the state’s players, the park is located in the Sangaithel area in Imphal West. Since the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics onwards, the tiny state of India has so far produced 19 Olympians, including seven from hockey, four each from boxing and weightlifting, three from judo, and one from archery.
N Biren tweeted, “Delighted to facilitate the first olympian of Manipur, Shri Pangambam Nilakomol Singh and olympian hockey player, Shri Ksh Thoiba Singh. They had shown the way in achieving many goals & paved the path for the youths & the nation in the field of games and sports.”
Speaking as the chief guest at the event, Chief Minister N Biren acknowledged the contributions of local clubs in molding the careers of the 19 Olympians who brought laurels and recognition to the state and country. “May this Olympian park encourage the future generations to achieve great heights and bring glory to the nation,” Biren said.
The Chief Minister referred to the Manipur Olympians as ‘Living Legends’ and appealed to create a healthy society free from drugs.
“Acknowledging the rich sporting culture and love for sports, the state has been referred to as the ‘Powerhouse of Sports’. The first National Sports University has also been set up in the state,” he added.
CM Biren said suitable government jobs were given to the sportspersons who won gold medals at national and international levels and the same will be continued in the near future.
The Chief Minister asked each and everyone to create and promote one Manipur where there is no division based on caste, religion, tribe, or hill and valley. Appreciating the village chiefs and CSO leaders, Singh also said villagers have started destroying poppy plants in the hills voluntarily. We can root out the drug menace by collective and cooperative efforts, he added.
Stating that the state government has come up with a lot of development projects across the state, the Chief Minister urged the people to have a sense of ownership of the different public properties and take care of them.
It may be mentioned that the park was constructed by Keystone Infra Pvt Ltd under Manipur Police Housing Corporation Ltd and inaugurated by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on January 6.
There is a long-term plan to set up hostels for players so as to provide training and it will be done in a phased manner, N Biren revealed, while adding that construction of a children’s park near the park is also under discussion.
Expressing their desire to do something historic for the land by his government, CM Biren said Manipur is a unique state, and those who do discuss its history will never know.
As such, leaders including Prime Minister and Home Minister look upon the state with respect, he continued, while highlighting the need to rectify the wrong history.
He recalled that suitable government jobs were given to the sportspersons who won gold medals at national and international level competitions as a part of a one-time solution in the past when he was the sports minister and 5 percent sports quota was reserved.
The same will be continued in the near future, he added.
However, the government cannot provide jobs to every national sports medallist as people other than sports persons could not be employed as the number of sports medallists is huge.
Stating that the government has been delivering lots of development projects in all corners of the state, Biren urged the people to have a sense of ownership of the different public properties and take care of them.
In his address, Youth Affairs & Sports minister Govindas Konthoujam said that there are various record-breaking items in the recently inaugurated constructions by Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
Manipur Olympian Park is the first of its kind in the country, Marjing polo statue is one of the biggest and tallest polo statues and the tricolor at INA Moirang is the highest national flag hoisted in the North Eastern states.
While assuring that updated equipment will be provided to replace the outdated ones, Govindas stated that the government is working on developing modern sports infrastructure in sub-divisions and districts.
Mention may be made that the park was constructed by Keystone Infra Pvt Ltd under Manipur Police Housing Corporation Ltd and was inaugurated by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on January 6.
State Planning Board deputy chairman and MLA S Rajen; Manipur Olympic Association president MLA Th Radheshyam, CAF&PD minister L Susindro; social welfare minister H Dingo; transport minister Khasim Vashum; commerce and industries minister, Nemcha Kipgen; Keishamthong MLA Sapam Nishikant; chief secretary Rajesh Kumar; first Manipur Olympian P Nilakomol; second Manipur Olympian Ksh Thoiba and various officials attended the program.
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