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MS Gill’s return augurs well for Indian Sports (5/31/2009)
--K. Arumugam
MS Gill’s return augurs well for Indian Sports

Manohar Singh Gill has been retained as Union Government’s Youth Affairs and Sports minister. A known hockey buff, Gill put back hockey on the priority list, was instrumental in getting about a dozen turf laid in various parts of India, planned for 40- six-a-side turf, all in his brief spell in his previous term.

Very significantly, he is a vocal and assertive sports minister after perhaps Uma Bharti.

India, the world’s biggest democracy, went into a two-month long election recently at the end of which Indian National Congress of which Gill was minister last time, returned to power with more vote share and members in the 524-strong parliament.

Gill, a former Election Commissioner, has now been elevated to Cabinet rank, which means he will have more powers and more say in the matters of his ministry.

This Gill has shot into fame when he played a crucial role in getting rid of his name sake in the Indian Hockey Federation within a month after replacing Mani Shankar Iyer. It is interesting to note here that the dull and drab Iyer frustrated India when expressed his helplessness in the context of India not qualifying for the last Olympics. His infamous quote was, “I will also rue along with rest of India as hockey dies”. No surprise this Iyer lost the election, and with that all the clout he had with the ruling party.

No surprise therefore many newspapers in their assessment of ministers hailed MS Gill’s bold move of sacking KPS Gill as his ‘strength’.

Perhaps aware of this, Gill has said on the day of assuming office for second term that one of his priorities will be to see hockey back. What he intends to do to realize this mammoth task in the context of existing complex situation is not known, but what is sure is, KPS Gill can forget hockey with this man at the helm. Sorry KPS, you are distinctly unlucky this time.

MS Gill can take stand, stick to it. With him at the helm, be sure World Cup won’t move out of India. Sorry Malaysia, sorry Australia. You are also distinctly unlucky as that of our own KPSG.

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Welcome Minister
by Ram Ratan on 6/1/2009 9:37:44 PM
If author's views are correct, then we should all welcome him, but I have my own reservation about ministers and all that