New Delhi: November 18, 2011
The Conference of Ministers of Youth Services & Sports of States and Union Territories has passed unanimously a resolution calling for compulsory introduction of Games and Sports as a part of curriculum of education in schools at all levels both in Centre and States with a view to give effect to the mandate of the Right of Education Act, 2009. This will encourage Sports Culture and broad based Games and sports in the country.
The Resolution passed in the Conference held here on November 18, states “Games and Sports should be introduced compulsorily as part of curriculum of education in schools at all levels both in Centre and States. Further, one period each day should be allocated for Games and Sports in all schools. The students’ participation should be graded and evaluated at par with other subjects and adequate weightage should be given to participation in Games and Sports. This will encourage sports culture and broad-base Games and Sports.”
Earlier, while addressing the Conference of Ministers of Youth Affairs & Sports of States and Union Territories, Ajay Maken, Minister of State for Youth Affairs & Sports has called for a comprehensive and multi-pronged strategy for developing sports culture and youth development in the country. He said that there is need for a strong policy for youth development, their employable skill, mass participation in sports and for promotion of strong sporting culture. Maken said “Between the last and the forthcoming 2011 census, the Youth population is expected to increase by 77 million while during 2011-12 the number would increase by 4 million.”
“In the districts (643) of India-backward and left-wing extremism affected, what is worrisome is that the anti-social elements are targeting the youth from poor families to get their recruits. In the backward regions of our country the main concerns are education, health care, livelihoods and jobs. These are factors hindering the mainstreaming of youth in these regions. This calls for a comprehensive and multi-pronged strategy for developing sports culture and youth development in the country.”
Explaining the themes of this year’s Conference, which are encouraging ‘Sports for all’ and ‘empowering of youth through employable skills’, Maken strongly advocated for making sports as a part of school curriculum and also suggested that this be assessed as a subject. He said “when, we are talking about sports excellence, how can we achieve when our school going children have very low level physical fitness. We cannot become sporting nation unless the school children are physically fit.” In view of this, Maken urged the States Sports Ministers to take up this issue on priority basis with respective Education Ministers in their States. Besides, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS), Bharat Scouts and Guides (BSG), National Social Service (NSS) and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), local panahayats, youth clubs of NYKS, State Youth Clubs, local schools and colleges, and self-help grounds will also play a major role in promoting sports activities in grassroots level, Maken added.
Giving details of initiatives taken by the Sports Ministry since last Conference, Maken said that Ministry has taken several steps towards achieving the goals of integration of ‘sports’ and ‘physical education’ in the school system; bringing ‘sports law’ for sports governance, establishing a National Institute of Coach Education, Patiala, National Institute of Sports Sciences and Medicine at New Delhi and taking steps to declare Rajiv Gandhi National Institute for Youth Development (RGNIYD) as an Institute of National Importance.
Speaking about empowering youth with employability skills, Maken stated that the Ministry has introduced Youth with Employability Skill (YES) Project in 59 Districts of North Eastern States with an objective to train the youth to gain employable skills. This project is being organized with the support of National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC). Maken suggested that for successful implementation of the programme, there is need to conduct the skill gap analysis through a market survey and matching this with the hopes and aspirations of youth of that area.