Star Sports India network was chosen as the broadcast and production partner for the upcoming Khelo India School Games, the Ministry of Sports & Youth Affairs announced on Monday. The Star, biggest broadcaster in India by virtue of covering sports in India, bagged the rights for the next five years & till 2022. The Ministry didn't reveal the financial details of the deal.
This will be the first such instance when school games will be given such a big coverage by one of the biggest media houses in India. It is expected that some 6,000 aspiring athletes will be given the opportunity to demonstrate their skills in the first edition of Khelo India School Games.
“With Khelo India, we seek to bring back active playtime in the lives of our children. Parents and teachers need to embrace sports and ensure that it is as essential a part of the everyday life of children as educational curriculum", India's sports minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore told the reporters.
“The best talent selected through the competition will be amongst 1,000-budding athletes eligible for a scholarship worth INR 5 lakh each per year for a period of eight years. Every year, new athletes will be added under the Khelo India scheme. Thus, over the period of the scheme, the country will have a solid bench-strength for all sports,” the Ministry stated.
The first edition was supposed to kick-off in the November 2017, but the hazardous smog forced the Government to push the dates further and the Games may be held at the end of January or in the first week of February, next month. The Khelo India School Games is a dream project of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and is a revamped version of the previously unsuccessful school model.
“Star Sports and Hotstar, with their vision of fostering a comprehensive, multi-sports ecosystem in India will be our ideal broadcast partners to help us realize the dream of transforming India into a global sporting powerhouse in the coming years,” Rathore added.