In a possible damage-control act, Maharashtra sports and youth welfare minister Padmakar Valvi made a visit to the academies at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex in Balewadi on Saturday.
As reported by DNA, the minister promised the academies that their contract would be renewed in 15 days. It is learnt that Pankaj Kumar, commissioner of the sports department, may face the music. Apparently, the notices were sent at his behest. Valvi agreed that it was not just a wrong move but also ‘illegal’ and ‘unconstitutional’.
“There is a committee appointed to look after the affairs in Balewadi. No individual can decide like this. Any decision has to be made after the committee’s consent,” he said, adding that the notices have been withdrawn. “The ministry never sent any message to the director or to the deputy director of sports to send any of these primary notices to the four academies,” he said.
Asked whether any action would be taken against Pankaj Kumar, he said, “His deed is illegal, but we have not discussed anything yet. Our first priority will be to renew the contracts of the academies, so that they can function smoothly,” he said. “I assure that the papers will be ready within 15 days and I will sanction them myself. There won’t be any hike in the monthly rent for five years, so that the academies and students can train at a minimum cost,” he added.