Sports Ministry eager on three-star services in SAI venues

Tribune News Service
New Delhi, January 8

The Sports Ministry is mulling handing over the running of at least two Sports Authority of India (SAI) hostel premises to private professional groups to give the athletes three-star services.

Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said that they decided to run a pilot project in SAI’s centres in Bengaluru and in Patiala to give the elite athletes the same facilities that they receive while touring abroad.

“Our players go abroad and get great service but when they come back we are not giving them the same facility. So we have decided to start a pilot project where a private agency will look after the hostels,” Rijiju said.

“We have to tie with some management people because our own SAI officials can’t increase the standards because we are not expert people in that field,” he added.

Rijiju further said that if the pilot project is successful, the scheme will be implemented in other SAI centres as well.

“We want those group associations or agencies that have the proficiency in running accommodation of high standards. So we will try to work out an agreement with those who can run the SAI hostels, which will be of three-star standards. Government or SAI staff cannot enhance quality. We have to provide good facilities to our international players, especially the Olympians and medal winners,” he said.

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