Leading federations ignored in extra grants process

Abdul Mohi Shahi
Monday, Jun 20, 2022

SLAMABAD: As the financial year draws closer, the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) is in process of making the ‘best’ of the remaining finances that usually lapse by the end of June.

The readjustment process is underway under the head of the annual federations grant with another Rs9.40 million expected to be released during the next ten days to ten different federations.

'The News' has learnt that these sports federations will be given extra grants in the coming days. Some of the most active and result-producing federations, however, have been totally ignored. Federations like Netball (Rs 1.5 million), Ju-Jitsu (Rs 1 million), Wushu (Rs 1 million), and National Para Federation (Rs 1 million) are among those that have little to show when it comes to international activities, yet these are being promoted ahead of others.

Pakistan Billiard and Snooker Association (Rs 1.5 million) and Athletics Federation of Pakistan (AFP) have genuine claims, all others including cycling (Rs 1 million), kabaddi (Rs 1 million) are having a good time.

The PSB had already distributed Rs 25 million early this year among different federations but the extra financial support had been restricted to a few.T

The Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) and the Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF), two of the most active federations, investing millions of rupees in teams traveling and participating abroad are not being looked after accordingly.

The PTF alone spent around Rs 15 million on traveling and participation of teams abroad. The PTF (Rs 3.5 million during the first phase) and PSF (Rs 2 million recently) send seven to eight teams abroad annually to participate in the different age group competitions.

About 15 junior squash players are in Thailand to compete in Asian juniors and at the same during the last three months, no less than four tennis teams visited abroad with under-12 just getting back from Nepal after securing a berth in the finals.

“Tickets alone on players participation cost us over Rs 13 million annually. This is besides our investment in participation in some of the mega-events. Yet, our request for the extra grant has not been accepted,” one of the federation officials when contacted said.

He claimed every federation is treated with the same yardstick. “Look there are some leading games and federations like hockey (Rs 3.5 million), squash, tennis, and snooker. These federations have earned laurels for the country over the years. Yet the grant given by the PSB does not cater to even five percent of their requirements. The government wants us to follow its rules and regulations without any real patronage. In developing countries like Pakistan, it is not easy to look for sponsorship for sports other than the main sport which is cricket in our case. Federation officials even have to pay from their own pockets sometimes to ensure teams' participation abroad. I hope that the government realises the importance and on the pattern of our neighboring country extends maximum support to sports federations.”