Not often do sports get brought up by the Union Finance Minister.
But when Arun Jaitley have his “Super” speech this week, he may have been the first ever to consciously bring attention to the need for more funds and resources to be put towards sports in India. Talk, however, is cheap and Jaitley knows that.
For the 2014-15 fiscal year, Jaitley has proposed Rs17.69bn ($295 million) for both sports and youth organizations. In the previous fiscal year, the budget was about Rs.12bn ($201 million). For those wondering, the increase calculates out to be about a 46 percent increase and has caught the attention of many around the nation.
Those who are familiar with the Union Finance Minister know his efforts are honest. Before taking this position, Jaitley was was the vice president of the Indian Cricket Board and president of the Delhi and District Cricket Association.
During the “Super” speech, Jaitley presented a preliminary document in terms of what the Indian government can do to sports. When getting into the details of the plan, he mentioned there are plans for national level sports academies. The goal will be to set these up along with major sports events all around the country.
Potentially the most important factor will be the government’s ability to get international caliber facilities ready. Specifically Jaitley wants to nurture the top talent in shooting, archery, boxing, wrestling, weightlifting and various track and field events.