SHILLONG: Union Minister of State Youth Affairs and Sports, Kiren Rijiju, on Monday inaugurated the Synthetic Athletic Track and Field and the Synthetic Football Ground at SAI Training Centre, NEHU Campus, Shillong.
Addressing the gathering, Rijiju said that Meghalaya and other Northeastern states have a huge potential in producing athletes to compete in national and international events.
"The development of various sporting infrastructure plays a very important role in honing the skills of athletes," Rijiju said.
Stating that the development of sports has recently been added as a subject of priority under the North Eastern Council (NEC), he urged the youngsters of the state to approach the NEC in availing the various sporting facilities available.
He also added, Shillong being a high altitude area, the training centre will act as a form of acclimatisation for athletes from other parts of the state for a varied period of time.
"SAI Training Centre, Shillong has the potential in becoming a centre of excellence in the country," he added.
Later, in the day, Rijiju inaugurated the Assam Rifles Public School (Sports).
This would be the first of its kind institution in the Northeast on the lines of MLN School of Sports at Rai (Sonipat), Haryana.
The school will function under the Khelo India Program of Government of India.
The MoU between Sports Authority of India and Assam Rifles was jointly released by Rijiju and Lieutenant General Sukhdeep Sangwan, Director General Assam Rifles during the inauguration ceremony.
Speaking on occasion, the Union Minister of State Youth Affairs and Sports applauded the efforts of Assam Rifles in bringing the vision of Sports School in the North East region to life and also stated that ARPS(Sports), Laitkor, Shillong will be a foundation from where future champions of the nation will be born.
The ARPS (Sports), Laitkor (Shillong) will have coaching facilities in Archery, Athletics and Fencing.
The Sports Authority of India (SAI) will sponsor and fund 50 boys and 50 girls in these sports disciplines.
The selection process will entail talent hunt including children from the remote and far flung areas.