February 26, 2009 2:20:36 am
In what is being projected as a sports city in the making,the colleges where the real stars are born dont have proper sports facilities. As many as 383,or nearly three-fourths,of the 526 colleges under the University of Pune (UoP) dont even have physical education directors and this hampers the overall development of students who want to pursue sports as their career.
The Pune University Teachers Association (PUTA) has taken up the issue with the university,demanding immediate recruitment. The university had sent a letter on May 9,2008,asking all colleges to fill the post. But,so far the response has been poor. PUTA has appealed to the university to take action against those colleges which have not filled the posts, said Deepak Shendkar,secretary of PUTA.
He said the local inspection committees that go to the colleges for inspection dont have members from the physical education department and hence they fail in effectively assessing the sports infrastructure.
Raghav Ashtekar,general secretary of PUTA,said the sports directors post in the university itself has been vacant for 10 years. The last director left the job in 1998 and after that the university has not made any efforts to fill the vacant post, he said.
Ashtekar said the colleges also lack basic sports facilities. The students of many colleges dont even have access to grounds and they lack basic sports equipment.
Shendkar said the sports ground of the university is also in a shambles,as it is mostly used as a helipad. Only some sports camps are arranged at the ground. The ground needs frequent repairs as these helicopter landings spoil it, he said.
A senior university official confirmed that most colleges dont have full-time physical education directors. However,he denied the allegation that the university ground was in a bad condition. We have maintained the ground properly and many competitions are held round the year on the ground, he said.
Sources said colleges are not using the funds allocated for sports facilities. The university had allocated Rs 1.5 crore for sports facilities in colleges in 2008-09. Only 132 of 526 colleges have applied for these funds so far. We have disbursed around Rs 80 lakh so far, an official said.
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