Harpal Singh Bedi
New Delhi: In a far-reaching decision Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju on Wednesday 9 September 2020 announced that shooters of all categories – elite, developmental and Khelo India – will be given ammunition and targets from Karni Singh Shooting Range (KSSR) and other accredited academies so that they can continue to train at their home range.
With this decision elite shooters like Apurvi Chandela, Anjum Moudgil, Saurabh Chaudhary and several others will have the advantage of training in their hometowns.
The minister took this all-important decision after he visited KSSR and interacted with shooters early in the day.
“It is important that athletes, especially 2024 and 2028 Olympic probables get a chance to continue their training wherever they are in the country. They may not be able to visit KSSR or other academies owing to the Covid 19 situation.” Rijiju said
“However, many of them practice in their home range as well as in facilities near their homes. We want to ensure that their training is in no way compromised because of lack of availability of ammunition. Athletes can collect whatever they need from KSSR and other accredited academies and continue their sporting activities.”
The decision will impact a total of 253 shooters across elite, developmental and Khelo India athletes, who can now train at a sporting facility convenient for them, without having to come to. KSSR.
Speaking about the decision, elite shooter Anish Bhanwala, who interacted with Sports Minister during his visit, said, “It felt great that Minister Sir came to meet us and enquire about our needs. If we can get the ammunition and practice at a range which is closer to our homes it will not just ensure our safety during Covid times but also allow us to devote more time to training.
“I am sure elite shooters who do not live in Delhi will benefit hugely from this decision. This will ensure that we can continue our Olympic training.”