Rourkela: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik laid the foundation stone of an international hockey stadium in Rourkela in Sundergarh district on Tuesday. This will be India’s largest of its kind when completed.
The new stadium named after noted freedom fighter Bursa Munda will be the second venue for the Men’s Hockey World Cup 2023 matches. The stadium will be located on the campus of the Biju Patnaik University of Technology, one of the premier technical institutes of Odisha located in the steel city, spread over 15 acres of land. The stadium capacity will be over 20,000, apart from providing them various facilities.
“The spirit of hockey is in the soil, air and water of Sundergarh district, which has now found a place on the world sports map. It is a matter of pleasure that Rourkela city has been nominated for the 2023 hockey World Cup venue,” Patnaik said while addressing a gathering at the BPUT ground. “The stadium will inspire the youth and inspire them to dream big and do great things,” he added.
Sports department officials said they are working closely with Hockey India to ensure every aspect of the technical and operational compliances is met in the stadium to turn it into the best facility to host the World Cup. The stadium is adjacent to the Rourkela airstrip, from where commercial flights are expected to start soon.
The chief minister also laid the foundation stone of astroturfs in all 17 blocks of the district to nurture hockey talent. Patnaik also inaugurated projects entailing an expenditure of Rs 835 crore and laid the foundation stones of various projects worth Rs 4,080 crore. The Chief Minister also discussed the steps taken to protect the tribal culture along with the educational facilities of the tribal children.