Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik an ardent hockey fan surprised everyone by taking the initiative to sponsor both the Indian men’s and women’s hockey team replacing the logo of the tainted Sahara Group for the next five years. Odisha became the first state in India to associate as a sponsor of any National sports team or sports federation. The sponsorship amount is not revealed. FIH and IOC president ND Batra, hockey legends Dhanraj Pillay, Dilip Tirkey and Viren Rasquinha of Olympic Gold Quest and the hockey players, both men and women, were present at the Grand launch of the partnership with Hockey India in Delhi. The teams will have the Indian camps beginning from tomorrow.
Odisha, a cradle of Indian hockey talent for decades, has been active hosting many hockey tournaments in the last few years after, Kalinga Stadium came up in the State’s capital city Bhubaneswar.
Many news outlets reported the comment of the Odisha CM;
“Hockey in Odisha is more than a sport, it’s a way of life, especially in our tribal regions where children learn to walk with hockey sticks. No wonder Odisha has produced India’s finest hockey talent. This is a first where a state government will not just be promoting a sport within its boundaries but will also support and nurture India hockey. This is Odisha’s gift to the nation.”
SPORTS IS NOT A MERE WORD!
IT IS A COMMITMENT!!
OUT HERE IN ODISHA SPORT IS LIFE!!!
Says a pop-up page of the State Government’s Sports and Youth Services Department’s website that was put in place for the Odisha Hockey World League international FIH hockey tournament held in Bhubaneswar in December 2017. The page show CM Patnaik with the majestic Kalinga stadium buzzing with activity in the background.
The newly designed logo on the Indian national hockey team jersey is a summation of Odisha – the Konark Wheel, the state’s famed coastline, endangered Olive Ridley turtles, Odissi dance form and hockey, reported Times of India.