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Dharamshala ready for IPL action; Dalai Lama invited to be chief guest

Once again Dharamshala – Himachal's upcoming cricket capital in the foot hills of Dhauladhar,is ready for the best sporting action of Indian Premier League,three T-20 matches at the home ground of Kings XI Punjab will be held from May 15,2011.

Written by Ashwani Sharma | Shimla |
May 7, 2011 2:30:02 am

Once again Dharamshala – Himachal’s upcoming cricket capital in the foot hills of Dhauladhar,is ready for the best sporting action of Indian Premier League (IPL)-IV,three T-20 matches at the home ground of Kings XI Punjab will be held from May 15,2011. Security arrangements have been tightened to ensure that the IPL gives the state a greater exposure to boost its tourism potential.

President of Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA),Anurag Thakur said that Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal will be in the stadium to kick-off the IPL matches on May 15. Tibetan Spiritual leader Dalai Lama has been invited to be chief guest on May 17. Governor Urmila Singh along with Chief minister Dhumal have been invited for the last day of the events.

A 72-room hotel – The Pavilion,built by HPCA is ready to accommodate the Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Deccan Chargers. Kings XI Punjab will be lodged at Club Mahindra and the Delhi Daredevils will stay at Surya hotel,McLeodganj.

Addressing the worries of the organisers,HPCA spokesman Sanjay Sharma said: “Arrangements have been made to cover the entire ground in case of rains,and later dry it up using state-of-the-art equipment. We are confident that the pitch will be favourable for the bowlers and batsmen”.

Anurag also informed: “I have sent special invites to Mukesh Ambani and his wife – who during quarter finals of the World Cup at Ahmedabad had complained of having not been invited to Dharamshala last year. Film star Amir Khan and lots of other prominent figures of the country including Union Minister Praful Patel,Preity Zinta ,Vijay Mallaya and his son will be at Dharamshala.”

The state government has already made Deputy Commissioner,Kangra R S Gupta the nodal officer for arrangements in town. “We have already held three meetings with different agencies including the organisers to finalise traffic mobility plans,parking and security,” said Anurag.

Superintendent of Police(Dharamshala),Daljit Thakur said: “Beside the three parking lots created last year,two more have been identified. Some of the roads have been converted to one-way traffic. Security at airport and hotels for the team and other prominent figures have also been tightened-up.”

The first match is on may 15 and will be played between Kings XI Punjab and Delhi Daredevils followed by the second match on May 17 between Kings XI Punjab and Royal Challengers Bangalore and finally on May 21 between Kings XI Punjab and Deccan Chargers.

Anurag is ecstatic: “The publicity Dharamshala is going to get through IPL games is perhaps much more than Himachal Tourism department could have ever dreamed of.”

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