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Narad Rai making efforts to organize 1st IPL match in UP

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Uttar Pradesh Sports and Youth Welfare Minister, Narad Rai has been trying to fix up a meeting with the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) for organizing IPL matches in Uttar Pradesh since long. 

"Efforts are being made to organize Indian Premier League (IPL) matches in Uttar Pradesh", Rai said. 

Surprisingly, for a state with such a huge population and talent, sport stadiums are struggling for survival because of the lack of budget and trained coaches. While there are International stadiums in Ahmedabad, Jalandhar, Cuttack, Vadodra and yet other parts of the country, there are hardly any in UP.  

Speaking in context with the Sports Culture in the State, Narai Rai charged the previous BSP Government for ruining it by setting up memorials and parks in the place of stadiums. He also said that because of the wrong policies of the BSP Government, the Lucknow stadium was dismantled to set up a park which damaged the image of Uttar Pradesh at the national and international level. He also pointed out about the only cricket stadium in the state, Green Park Stadium in Kanpur, where international matches were played at one time but now, it has turned into ruins, due to which Australia refused to play there in 2009. 

As far as stadiums in Lucknow are concerned, University Ground is a famous Test Cricket stadium where only one International test match has been played on 23-26 October, 1952 between India and Pakistan. K. D. Singh Babu Stadium is another one but there also, the last match was played on 1st December, 2005 (Women's Cricket). There are few other stadiums in Kanpur like Kamla Stadium and Faizabad Sports Complex but they are under construction. 
So, the Uttar Pradesh Government is planning to lease out several acres of land to the Board of Cricket Control (BCCI) to build an international level Cricket stadium at the cost of Rs. 250 crore in Agra. 

Besides, Narad Rai announced that Sports colleges would be set up in Ballia and Basti district of UP. There is also a plan to hike meal allowance of the athletes from Rs. 150 per day to Rs.200. 

Narad Rai also stressed on the fact that a Government order has been issued for providing Gram Samaj land for Sports grounds in villages where land consolidation is being undertaken.