GUWAHATI, Oct 27 - Union Minister of State for Sports and Youth Affairs Sarbananda Sonowal in a press conference here announced that an amount of Rs 95 crore will be spent for hosting the 12th South Asian (SAF) Games in Assam and Meghalaya from February 6 to 16, 2016.
Sonowal, thanking Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and his Meghalaya counterpart Mukul Sangma for taking keen interest in hosting the SAF Games, said the preparation is in full swing in both the States and hoped all the renovation and construction works for the coveted sporting event will be completed within December 15, which has been fixed as the deadline.
The Union Minister also launched the sites for the SAF Games and revealed that an amount of Rs 19.3 crore has already been released for readying the venues. He said Rs 60 crore will be utilized for conduction of the Games, while Rs 24 crore has been earmarked for infrastructure. On the other hand Rs 11 crore will be spent for teams which will be accommodated in various hotels in both the cities.
Sonowal informed that the State governments will monitor the utilization of the allotted fund which should be crystal clear. The best quality equipment for the SAF Games will be purchased and for that qualified persons will be deployed for selecting all the equipment.
On the role of the Assam Olympic Association, Sonowal said, the apex sports body of the State is extending helping hand in all aspects and hoped along with the AOA the other States of the North Eastern region also will provide their full support to the Games.
The minister mentioned that the Central Government has taken various resolutions for supporting the sportspersons of the country so that they can excel in their respective events. Apart from financial assistance, the Central Government has decided to provide coaching and training to the sportspersons under the scheme �Assistance to National Sports Federations� with a view to giving boost to the preparation of Indian athletes for the Rio Olympics 2016.
Earlier, the minister inaugurated the training workshop of different disciplines for hosting the SAF Games here this morning. He also held a meeting of the top officials of the other northeastern states seeking all possible help from them in hosting the SAF Games in a successful manner as it is a prestige issue for the region.