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Dutt promises world-class infrastructure

May 25, 2004 14:14 IST

Veteran Congress leader and parliamentarian Sunil Dutt, who took charge of the Union sports ministry today, promised facilities for sportspersons that are on par with international standards.

A first-time minister, Dutt agreed that India lacked in infrastructure, which was an impediment to the country becoming
a sporting powerhouse.

"I agree to a great extent [that we lack proper infrastructure]. We must respect people who represent us in
the sporting arena. They should get the same facilities as sportspersons in other parts of the world. This will be
our effort," Dutt told reporters soon after taking office at Shastri Bhavan in New Delhi.

Promising to change the face of sports, the actor-turned politician said he would ensure that his ministry "shines" by virtue of his hard work.

"I am like a bull. When I work I work -- heavy bulls can't turn their heads -- and I will work very hard to ensure that my ministry shines," he said, adding he had asked specifically for sports and was not here out of any compulsion.

Dutt also prescribed yoga to get rid of the growing doping menace in sports, saying it could help athletes control their mind and body, without giving in to the temptation of taking performance-enhancing drugs.

"Doping is universal. It is a great temptation," said the minister when asked how he intended to tackle the doping menace, especially with the Athens Olympics around the corner.

"Those who represent the country in sports have a lot of temptation. With yoga you can control your mind and body. It is not difficult," Dutt said. "Yoga can prevent people from going to that side."


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