We can host SA Games in 2018, says Shrestha

Kathmandu, July 2

Nepal Olympic Committee President Jeevan Ram Shrestha today said the hosting of the 13th South Asian Games in

Nepal was not impossible and that the government needed to form the organising committee at the earliest.

“We can host the SA Games on time if we begin the preparation from today and for that the government should announce the organizing committee to kick start the preparations,” said Shrestha at an interaction programme entitled 13th South Asian Games: Preparations and Challenges organised by Nepal Sports Journalists Forum to mark the 92nd World Sports Journalists Day.

“The government has allocated budget to prepare for the regional meet and Prime Minister KP Oli has publicly declared to provide adequate amount to host the games.

The lack of organising committee is the main problem to begin the preparation as we do not have proper infrastructure to host the games,” he added.

Shrestha, however, said the hosting of the Games would not be an easier one. “Although it is not impossible, it is not easy as well.

The infrastructures have been damaged by the earthquake and we need to start the construction works from zero,” he said.

“I have taken it as an opportunity as well. In the name of hosting 13th SA Games, we will have modern infrastructures which will be useful for another two-three decades,” he said.

“If all the commitments are fulfilled and the stakeholders work accordingly, we can host the games in 2018,” Shrestha said.

“The hosting of SA Games is not limited only to the government or NOC, it has to be a matter of pride for every Nepal people.”

Niranjan Rajbanshi, Treasurer of AIPS-Asia, said the hosting of SA Games in 2018 would be a day dream if the concerned authorities keep working at snail’s pace.

“Practically it is not possible to host the Games by 2018 as we have not started the preparation yet,” said Rajbanshi. “A lot of things have to be done and I don’t think we will be able to complete the works in one and half years,” he added.

NSJF IPP Ajay Phuyal said Nepal should utilise the 13th SA Games as an opportunity.

“We have to make it a grand event and not organise for the sake of doing it,” he said. NSJF General Secretary Prakash Timalsina accused the government of not doing anything for the last six months since taking the flag from India.

NSJF First Vice-president Durganath Subedi — who facilitated the programme — read out the message of AIPS President Gianni Merlo’s message, which focused on fight against corruption and doping in sports worldwide.