Modi government to push football as the sport of choice in India

Modi government to push football as the sport of choice in India

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The Central Government has undertaken an initiative to make football ‘a sport of choice’ in India through which they aim to reach 11 million children. The ‘massive’ school engagement program comes at a time when the sport is seeing renewed interest with the ISL leading its older rival- the I-league.

Indian football is seeing a sort of resurgence over the last decade. While English Premier League followership is reaching new heights, the ISL has revamped the way Indian football is being consumed. Overtaking its older rival, the I-league, the Indian Super League has drawn fans who were previously uninvolved in the sport - even in regions not traditionally known for the sport like Chennai.

Sports minister Vijay Goel had earlier said that government would take steps to make football the no.1 sport in India, and yesterday, he declared a programme to take football to the nook and cranny of the country.

The government is now looking forward to reach 11 million children through a ‘massive’ school engagement programme.

“Encourage and incentivize schools to make children play football on regular basis,” read the infographic which was tweeted by the government.

The government is looking forward to reach out to 37 cities and 12,000 schools across 29 states. The initiative will be carried out in three phases until September 2017 including in-school activities and football festivals.

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