This Week Chhattisgarh: Strides in cricket, Ranji team in view
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Strides in cricket, Ranji team in view
Chhattisgarh cricketers are inching closer to their dream — a Ranji Trophy team of their own. After it was carved out of MP in 2000, the state has not had any representation in cricket at national level. Things have moved swiftly this year. In February, the BCCI held trials at Naya Raipur for fast bowlers, a major event that saw youngsters from even neighbouring states turning up. Last month, the BCCI has allowed under-16 and under-14 teams of the state into the Central Zone tournament. Besides, the state will also host two matches of the C K Nayudu Trophy. Chhattisgarh Cricket Association secretary Rajesh Dave hopes the state will be granted a full-fledged Ranji status next year. With an international cricket stadium already developed at Naya Raipur, the association has its eye on the IPL too.
Tribals seek their due
Several groups are trying to put together a political front of tribals, with a major event scheduled on the occasion of World Tribal Day on August 9 in Raipur. Tribal leaders of the BJP and the Congress have often grumbled about their leaders not taking enough steps for the welfare of tribal-dominated districts. The community is under-represented, and there have been demands from tribal leaders of both parties for a chief minister of their community. The state's most senor tribal leader, Arvind Netam who was recently suspended from Congress following his support to BJP's presidential candidate P A Sangma, is said to be working to create solidarity among tribals across parties. Sangma will be the chief guest and BJP MP Nand Kumar Sai will chair the function.
Transfer of capital
After much delay, Chief Minister Raman Singh has finally conducted a bhoomi poojan at the new capital of Naya Raipur. The Mantralaya is scheduled to shif in November. The ambitious project has seen stiff resistance from farmers whose land was acquired, and who have blamed the government for not giving adequate compensation. Hundreds of farmers stormed the function and had to be driven away by police. While the government will shift its secretariat, the viability of residential and commercial complexes in the 8,013-hectare township has been questioned. With everything assigned to government agency New Raipur Development Authority, architects say development will be lopsided in the absence of private players.
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