Row Ensues After Pawar, MVA Leaders Park Vehicles on Stadium Track
Union Minister Kiren Rijiju said that he was “very sad” to see “such disrespect for sports”.
Reacting to senior Maharashtra ministers and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar using the Shri Shivchhatrapati Sports Complex in Pune to park their vehicles for a meeting on Saturday, Union Minister Kiren Rijiju said that he was "very sad" to see "such disrespect for sports".
The former chief of the Indian Olympics Association, Pawar, on Saturday visited the stadium along with state Sports Minister Sunil Kedar and Minister of State Aditi Tatkare to review a project.
Images of their vehicles parked on the racetrack were posted on Twitter by BJP MLA Siddharth Shirole.
Sports Minister Sunil Kedar, while speaking to The Indian Express, said the matter was an “oversight” on their part. “Because of his age, Pawar saheb now has difficulty in climbing the stairs. Therefore, his car was allowed inside. However, the fact that many cars came in and were parked on the track was due to an oversight on our part,” he said.
BJP’s Shivajinagar MLA Siddharth Shirole said in a tweet, “Not only has the Athletic Track worth crores of rupees at ShivChaptrapati Sports Complex #Pune been damaged, but the spirit of Sportspersons who bring glory to our nation has been severely dented by the shameful & arrogant actions of #MVA leadership. (sic)”
The Pune administration also put out an apology saying, “The incident has been noted by the sports minister and instructions have been issued to make sure that such an incident is not repeated,” NDTV reported.
Pune district information officer further said, “Going forward it will be made sure that vehicles are not allowed at an athletic track.”
Saying that the track was already worn out, Kedar was reported as saying, “We will sanction funds necessary at the earliest and lay another international-level track.”
(With inputs from The Indian Express and NDTV)
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