Manipur Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren Singh on Tuesday announced that the state government is planning to develop six more football grounds like the Khuman Lampak Main Stadium before the next edition of the Durand Cup.
The chief minister was speaking to the media on the sidelines of his inspection visit to Khuman Lampak Main Stadium on Tuesday, where he reviewed the arrangements being put up at the stadium to host the 131st edition of Asia’s oldest football tournament, the Durand Cup.
While the tournament officially began on Tuesday in Kolkata, it will kick off in Imphal from August 18 with a match between homegrown NEROCA FC and TRAU FC.
CM Biren expressed satisfaction over the preparations and appreciated the efforts of the sports minister, officials of sports department and the army personnel as well. He said the technical team of the Sports Department, with the support of the Army personnel, had developed the Khuman Lampak Main Stadium within a short period of time.
Biren further said that Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh along with Chief of Army Staff will inaugurate the tournament in Imphal.
Being a first-time host, he said that Manipuri people, who are very passionate about football and other sports, must welcome the initiative of the Indian Armed Forces.
He expressed pride that Manipur, despite its small population, had sent seven athletes in the Commonwealth Games, 2022 and bagged as many as five medals.
Manipur Youth Affairs and Sports (YAS) Minister Govindas Konthoujam, Major General Navin Sachdeva, Principal Secretary (YAS) SS Chhabra, among other officials accompanied the chief minister in the inspection visit.