Kapil flays media for neglecting other sports

Published: Wednesday, July 6, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Bangalore:Former Indian captain Kapil Dev wants achievers in other sports who have made the country proud to be treated on par with cricketers; he feels they need a better deal from the public and media.

Speaking at a press conference to announce the induction of former Indian sprinter Ashwini Nachappa as a member of the Hero Indian Sports Academy (HISA), he said billiards and chess players, for example, deserve far more recognition andadulation.

Cricket has got everything going for it in India in terms of organisation, money and publicity; deserving achievers in the other sports need far more media spotlight and pat on the back.

HISA, of which he is the founder chairman, is unhappy about the poor budget allocation for sport. India's annual sports budget is equivalent to what top ten American sportspersons spend in a year, he said.

"We do neglect other sports," Kapil said. "Media is partly responsible".

Meanwhile, Ashwini, an Asian Track and Field silver medallist, became fifth sportswoman to become a member of HISA, which is into promoting sports and sports talent, after Diana Eduljee, Bachendri Pal, Elisa Nelson and P T Usha.

Ashwini stressed on making sports a part of the education system and encourage students to take up a career in sports. Otherwise, India would not see a surge in the number of topsportspersons, she said, and lamented that sports is not considered a way of life in India.

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