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Agha Siraj names two hockey grounds after ex-Olympians and KHA chief

Agha Siraj names two hockey grounds after ex-Olympians and KHA chief

KARACHI: The Sindh government named the Karachi Hockey Association (KHA) Complex in Gulshan Iqbal after former Olympian Hanif Khan and incumbent KHA President Dr Syed Junaid Ali Shah.

Similarly, another KHA premises in the district Central opposite Dr Ziauddin Hospital that has been cleared of the encroachments, has been named after the 1960 Rome Olympic gold medalist Abdul Waheed Khan and ex-Olympian Samiullah.

The announcement was made by the Speaker Sindh Assembly Agha Siraj Durrani at a ceremony held at the KHA Complex the other day.

The director general KDA, Sami Siddiqui, who was also present on the occasion besides Sindh Minister for Information Nasir Hussain Shah, said a notification in this regard will be issued soon.

The speaker who went around the stadium also inaugurated the mini turf and watched young boys and girls in separate exhibition matches.

Speaking on the occasion, the speaker said he was impressed to see youth of the city engaged in the healthy activities at the premises which has been cleared of encroachments

He said the government had cleared a number of stadia in the metropolis of encroachments that were misused by people who had their vested interests.

Paying compliments to the late Dr Mohammad Ali Shah he said the late orthopaedic surgeon was his friend and one of the best sports ministers the province ever had.

Durrani said Dr Shah had done tremendous sports development work across Sindh which speaks high about his dedication.

Lauding his passion for cricket, he said Dr Shah was the right person to head the Pakistan Cricket Board.

“It was his love for the game that he developed Asghar Ali Shah cricket stadium in North Nazimabad where he too, had played a couple of matches between the Governor’s XI and the Chief Minister’s XI,” said Durrani.

The speaker said Karachi used to be the hub of sports in the past and had unearthed stalwarts like Hanif Mohammad and Mushtaq Mohammad among others in the past.

He called upon the KHA chief to keep his father’s legacy alive by reviving sports in the metropolis.

Speaking on the occasion the information minister said the government had got a number of amenity sports grounds vacated in the city and it was its endeavour to revive sporting culture.

Earlier, the KHA President said KDA had identified 54 amenity plots in the city where plans are afoot to create facilities for cricket, hockey and squash among other sports to make the metropolis a true sporting city.

He recalled that when he took over the KHA it was a dead horse and had Rs175 in its kitty. “I took it as a challenge and the result is visible,” he added.

He thanked the DG Sindh Rangers, who visited the KHA twice, and the DG KDA for their help in elearing the encroachments from stadia.

He said it was his desire to create a ladder and provide best sporting facilities. A hostel and a gymnasium is being built soon, he said.

He said after formation of hockey team by the KDA and hiring of few players by the Sindh Rangers, the revival of the hockey teams of KPT and the PNSC was also in the pipeline.

Gulfraz Khan also spoke on the occasion.

Besides Hanif Khan and the KHA secretary Haider Hussain, the ceremony was largely attended by the KHA officials, hockey players, and guests.

Published in Dawn, April 23rd, 2018

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