Itanagar: Arunachal Pradesh Sports and Youth Affairs minister Mama Natung on Wednesday assured the early completion of the Aalo Sports Stadium which has been lying defunct for almost five years.

Natung’s assurance came following his visit to the under-construction stadium at Aalo, the headquarters of West Siang district.

The stadium, located in the heart of Aalo town, along with its entire infrastructure, was dismantled around five years back for the construction of a new one.

Following that, the construction works hardly caught pace and all sports and social activities besides other celebrations have since been shifted to the Government Higher Secondary School playground.

“The state government is quite concerned about this issue and has also placed Rs 3 crore to start the work recently. More funds will be sanctioned from the government’s side as the work progresses,” Natung said.

The minister said the government is also aware of the fact that several sports lovers, especially the youngsters have being deprived of sports activities for many years due to the delay in the construction.

“The delay in the construction work was due to delinking of Special Plan Assistance (SPA) aid granted by the Centre,” Natung said while adding that the sports secretary, director and his team from the sports directorate have been deputed to convince the locals regarding the setback.

Speaking on behalf of the people, former minister and Aalo Town Peoples’ Welfare and Development Society chairman Kento Ete said that delay in construction of the stadium at Aalo not only has deprived the youths of sports activities but also hindered all regional and national celebrations, social gatherings, etc.

“Stadiums sanctioned along with the Aalo stadium have already been constructed and are functioning in today’s date,” Ete said while urging the minister to sort out the issue with the funding at the earliest.

Earlier, Aalo East legislator Kento Jini and West Siang deputy commissioner Moki Loyi briefed the minister on the progress of work, fund placements and initiatives taken for the stadium construction.

Natung on the occasion also appealed to all to support the ‘Air Gun Surrender Abhiyan’, an initiative of the state’s forest department to stop wildlife hunting.

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