Shimla/ April 7, 2012
Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal said that the state government would be presenting the memorandum prepared by Citizen Forum Annandale to the Government of India with the request to return the historic ground to the State to be developed as multipurpose sports stadium in the State capital.
He was addressing a massive rally of sports organizations from different parts of the state extending support for getting the Annandale ground returned to the State, here on Saturday.
Chief Minister said that the matter was in the knowledge of the top brass in the Government of India, as the same had been reiterated time and again through different modes of communication besides meeting them in person.
He requested the Members of Parliament from the state to meet the Prime Minister and Defence Minister to hand over the ground to the State Government, which was State property and its lease expired thirty years ago.
He said that during NDA regime at the Centre, the matter had been raised with the then Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister and agreed in principle to return the ground to the State which could not materialize due to the change in government at the Centre. He said the State was according high priority to creation of quality sports infrastructure so that the State was benefited with sport tourism activities. He said that with the return of the ground, the State, in association with the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association, would develop it into a multipurpose sports complex so that different sports events could be organized.
He said that with the development of Annandale ground as multipurpose sports stadium a new chapter would be added to quality sports infrastructural facilities in the State and attract sports lovers from different parts of the world to enjoy sports events in the pollution free, clean and serene environment of the State.
Dhumal put his signature on the memorandum of the Citizen’s Forum to be presented to the Government of India with signatures of 1.08 lakh citizens of the State supporting move of the Forum to get Annandale back.
MP Lok Sabha, National President, BJYM and President, HP Cricket Association, Anurag Thakur, said that he had raised the issue of return of Annandale ground to the State in the Parliament and also met Defence Minister to reiterate the demand of the youth of Himachal Pradesh.