A few days ago I listened to a sports minister saying that the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) should hand over its coaching centres to provinces as part of the devolution. It’s a misconception. The PSB is not bound to do so. The Board under the notification of the cabinet division dated June 30, 2011, is only bound to transfer some sports projects to provinces. And it has been learnt that the Board has already done that.
The fate of the two boxing gymnasiums, one at the PSB Coaching Centre Karachi and the other at the PSB Coaching Centre Quetta, is yet to be decided.
Under the notification, the PSB had to transfer them to the federating units but because of their being within the PSB Coaching Centres’ premises the Board has moved a summary, requesting the government that these two facilities should stay with the Board. It said it would create problems for it otherwise. And it is likely that the Board will retain both the gymnasiums. Under the devolution, the sports ministry was abolished and its functions were given to the PSB which is a corporate and autonomous body, responsible for running the country’s sports.
The Coaching Centres are in fact PSB’s integral parts. If they are taken away from it, the Board will not be able to play its role effectively for the promotion of sports.
The Australian Sports Commission (ASC), which is a board of commissioners appointed by the government like the PSB, also has such centres.
The PSB’s centres in the federating units are operated for training athletes for international events and holding different competitions. And provinces get benefitted from these important components of the PSB.
These centres serve to bring together the authorities of the PSB and provinces, which is necessary for handling sports affairs.
The presence of PSB in provinces enables the Board to best assist its affiliated national federations. It provides them training facilities as per their demands.
In case the training centres are taken away from the Board, how will federations set up their camps for international competitions in provinces? In that case, the federations will have to contact provinces for the facilities and it will be a difficult task for them as the federations are not registered with provinces.
Recently, a PML-N MNA, Rana Mohammad Afzal, requested the Prime Minister for the establishment of a PSB Coaching Centre like facility at Faisalabad. The PSB is also going to establish a PSB Coaching Centre at Skardu to meet the demand of the Gilgit-Baltistan government. The Board has already got a 191 kanal plot for the project.
Under the devolution, the functions of the Ministry of Sports which have been transferred to the PSB are: (1) legislation covering all aspects of sports affairs and matters ancillary thereto; (2) design, develop and implement sports policy in conformity with national objectives and laws; (3) monitoring of the implementation of policies on all aspects of sports; (4) national sports awards, including Pride of Performance Awards in the field of sports; (5) develop sports infrastructure, including the establishment of sports stadia and facilities; (6) international exchange of sportspersons, experts and teams with foreign countries; (7) all international aspects of sports including negotiations for bilateral and multilateral agreements for mutual assistance and cooperation in the sports field; (8) regulation of administrative, budgetary and other matters of organisations dealing with sports; (9) sports matters relating to all federating units; (10) financial assistance to sports organisations, sportsmen and their bereaved families.
The IPC division was given the administrative control of the Board established for the promotion and development of sports under the Sports Development and Control Ordinance 1962.
It is pertinent to mention here that under the devolution, the PSB has been assigned a handful of additional tasks. The problem here is that as per 1973 rules of business a division can correspond with another division but an autonomous body cannot correspond with a division. And the PSB is an autonomous body.
The notification further says: on re-organisation of federal secretariat in pursuance of constitution (Eighteenth Amendment) Act 2010 (Act No. X of 2010), the following projects under the Ministry of Sports are transferred to the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: construction of a boxing gymnasium at Peshawar (2) provision of facilities in Qazi Mohib Hockey Stadium at Bannu (3) construction of sports stadium at Upper Dir (4) improvement/construction of sports facilities at D I Khan (5) construction of sports stadium at Ouch, Lower Dir (6) construction of sports stadium at Nowshera (7) laying of hockey turf at Swat (8) improvement of Malam Jabba Ski Slope at Malam Jabba, Swat.
The projects transferred to the Punjab government include: (1) construction of a sports stadium at tehsil Pattuki, district Kasur (2) construction of a gymnasium hall at Sialkot (3) construction of a sports stadium at Nankana Sahib (4) construction of a sports stadium at Mianwali (5) construction of a gymnasium hall at Bahawalpur (6) construction of a wrestling arena at Iqbal Park, Lahore (7) construction of a sports stadium at tehsil Chunian, district Kasur (8) laying of a synthetic hockey turf at Sheikhupura (9) construction of a sports complex at Narowal (10) construction of a players’ hostel and upgradation of the sports stadium at Chakwal (11) construction of sports facilities at Muridke, district Sheikhupura (12) construction of a sports stadium at Ahmadpur Sharkia, district Bahawalpur, (13) upgradation/renovation of existing Qasim Bagh Stadium, Multan (14) construction of a sports complex at Kamalia district, Toba Tek Singh (15) construction of a boxing gymnasium at Lahore (16) construction of a sports hostel at PSB Coaching Centre, Lahore (17) renovation of squash courts at Rawalpindi (18) construction of a sports stadium at Shahkot district, Nankana Sahib (19) upgradation of existing hockey ground at Haji Asghar Stadium, Lala Musa district Gujrat (20) construction of a wrestling hall and renovation / upgradation of the existing hall at Gujranwala (21) construction of a gymnasium hall at Bahawalpur.
The projects transferred to the government of Gilgit-Baltistan are: (1) laying of a synthetic hockey turf at Gilgit (2) and construction of a sports stadium at Skardu.
The projects transferred to the Balochistan government are: (1) construction of a boxing gymnasium at Quetta (2) renovation/upgradation of the existing football ground at Qila Saifullah (3) upgradation of the Jamal Anwar Nasir Shaheed Stadium at Chaman (4) upgradation of the Taj Lala Football Stadium at Pishin (5) construction of a multi-purpose sports hall at Mastung (6) construction of a sports stadium at Mastung (7) laying of a synthetic hockey turf at Sibbi (8) construction of a sports stadium at Zhob (9) construction of a sports complex at Pringabad (10) construction of a sports stadium at Bori, district Loralai.
The projects transferred to Sindh are: construction of a boxing gymnasium at PSB Coaching Centre, Karachi, (2) construction of residential flats for staff of PSB Coaching Centre, Karachi (3) construction of Malakhra stadium at Sehwan Sharif, district Dadu (4) laying of a synthetic hockey turf at Sukkur (5) construction of a sports stadium at Tando Adam, district Sanghar (6) construction of a players hostel, a boxing hall and seating steps at Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Complex, Mirpurkhas (7) laying of a synthetic hockey turf at Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Complex, Mirpurkhas (8) construction of a sports complex at Sukkur (9) construction of a boundary wall, road network and paved area at PSB Coaching Centre, Karachi (10) construction of a swimming pool at Nawabshah (11) construction of a sports complex at Jacobabad (12) renovation of squash courts at Karachi (13) construction of a players hostel at Karachi.