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Sports school project in limbo

Published : 11 Oct 2021 10:56 PM | Updated : 12 Oct 2021 11:43 AM

Establishment of Sports School, originally a three-year project, has not yet been completed although six years have elapsed.

The project management now seeks more time and money to complete the work.

The third amendment proposal of the project titled “Establishment of Sports Schools in Chattogram and Rajshahi under Bangladesh Sports Education Institute” has been sent to the Planning Commission. The cost of the project, meanwhile, increased to Tk 162.46 crore from the original Tk 87.67 crore.

The actual progress of the work stood at 50 percent till June 2021, and the financial expenditure so far is said to be Tk 88.20 crore. 

However, in the third amendment, the term is being extended for another two years to be implemented by the Bangladesh Sports Education Institute (BKSP) by June 2023.

Pradeep Ranjan Chakraborty, Secretary of the Department of Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation (IMED), said, “Why does the project to build only two schools take so long? As the implementation is delayed, people's money is being wasted and opportunity is being lost.”

In other words, if this project was implemented in time, the skills of those who studied here would increase, he mentioned. 

They could bring fame to the country, but those opportunities have been wasted, he said, adding that the project should be monitored more closely.

An official of the Planning Commission said that the meeting of the Project Evaluation Committee (PEC) was held on June 24 this year after receiving a proposal from the Ministry of Youth and Sports. 

It has been recommended to present it at the meeting of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) as the recommendations given at that meeting have been complied with, he added. 

If approved, the project will be implemented by the BKSP by June 2023, he mentioned.

According to the project proposal, the project has been taken up to discover sports talents and players from Chattogram and Rajshahi regions under advanced training and education and send them to national and international competitions. 

The main project was approved by ECNEC for implementation from January 2015 to December 2017 at an estimated cost of Tk 87.67 crore. 

Later, the ministry brought the first amendment by increasing the estimated cost of the project to Tk 93.90 crore and the duration by one year. 

After that, the estimated cost of the project was further increased to Tk 130 crore and the duration was extended by three years which was approved on 9 July 2019.

The reason given for the revision of the project is that the price of land has gone up as non-agricultural land has been selected instead of agricultural land for the Rajshahi part of the project. 

That is why it was not possible to acquire the land. As a result, the project activities could not be completed on time.

That is why the total estimated cost of the project has been increased again to Tk 162.46 crore and the duration was extended by two years till June 2023.

The reasons for revising the project include construction of administrative buildings, trainee hostel buildings, officers quarters, dormitories, multi-sports indoor buildings, academic buildings, construction of pavilion buildings and roads, area lighting with sub-stations, football and cricket grounds with pitches, boundary walls.

A third amendment has been proposed to complete the unfinished work of the organs making the surface drain. 

In addition, a two-year extension has been proposed for the acquisition of land in the Rajshahi part and for the smooth completion of other activities. As a result, the project has to be revised.

The main activities of the project are: Acquisition of 47 acres of land, development of 299,279 cubic meters of land, 1,960 square meters of administrative building, 5,888 square meters of trainee hostel building, 2,550 square meters of officers quarters, 1,000 square meters of dormitory building, Construction of 2,398  square meter of multi sports indoor building, 1,060 square meter academic building, 230 square meter pavilion building and football and cricket ground with pitch of 3,954 lakh cubic meters.

Mosammat Nasima Begum, Member (Secretary), Department of Socio-Economic Infrastructure, said, “The main objective of BKSP is to develop students as good quality athletes besides general education.”

At present, BKSP students are playing an important role in almost all sports including cricket, she said, adding that if the project is implemented, talented players from Chattogram and Rajshahi regions will be brought under advanced training and education. 

In this way, they will be able to take part in national and international competitions and achieve success, she mentioned.

Begum added, “The Third Amendment proposal is acceptable to complete the incomplete work of the project considering the importance and role of sports development at the regional level - building trained players through building sports-training infrastructure, enhancing players' skills, developing sports and improving quality.”

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