Fillip to sports

Published : Aug 24, 2007 00:00 IST

The indoor sports complex on the ANU campus.-

The indoor sports complex on the ANU campus.-

The indoor sports

ACHARYA Nagarjuna University achieved a rare distinction by becoming the first university to set up an exclusive sports hostel. A brainchild of Vice-Chancellor V. Balamohandas, the project was executed within a record time of one year.

While academics get the prime attention, the university authorities believe that sporting activity will help students develop a wholesome personality capable of facing the challenges in society. This belief has driven us to give equal importance to developing the physical abilities of students, the Vice-Chancellor said.

The establishment of a sports hostel has given a fillip to sporting activity in the affiliated colleges. We identified a lacuna in sporting activity in the region and thus felt the need to build a hostel for sportspersons and provide the infrastructure necessary for hosting national events, Balamohandas said.

Identifying a suitable location for the hostel was not a problem as the university has a huge campus. Once the site was identified, the Vice-Chancellor personally intervened to seek financial assistance from philanthropists. A sum of Rs.60 lakh was raised and, additionally, the university mopped up Rs.5 crore from its own resources to give shape to the project.

Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy laid the foundation stone for the hostel in February 2006 and work commenced under the supervision of the Central Public Works Department. The sports hostel was inaugurated on April 7 by State Finance Minister K. Rosaiah. The sports hostel consists of three blocks with 60-dormitory type rooms, which can accommodate 800 students. Besides regular sporting activities, the sports hostel also plays host to events conducted by the Sports Authority of India and the Sports Authority of Andhra Pradesh.

The Department of Physical Education conducted a rural sports meet in January in which more than 500 students participated. The meet was sponsored by the CBR Foundation for Sports, Vijayawada, and was conducted by students doing the degree course in physical education. The year 2007 could well turn out to be a year of sports for ANU. The university has introduced a postgraduate course in physical education from the current academic year. The two-year course got sanction from the National Council for Teacher Education, Bangalore.

Y. Kishore, head of the Physical Education Department, said there were plans to start a research wing to offer M. Phil and Ph.D programmes. Job-oriented courses in sports management, physiotherapy, fitness management, health education, food and nutrition, and sports training methods are on the anvil, he added.

P. Samuel Jonathan
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