They are on a trip to big cities in the country

A group of 20 young footballers from Abujmaad in Chhattisgarh reached the city on an exposure visit being organised by the CRPF.

Players from under-19 football teams in Dantewada district, who participated in a recent tournament there, were given a bonus in the form of a trip to big cities, 20 were sent to Hyderabad and 20 came to the city, Commandant of CRPF 198 Battalion Nisheet Kumar told mediapersons here on Monday.

The youngsters were taken to Simhachalam temple and the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant on Monday and would be taken around the different places in the city and the district in the next two days.

Friendly match

The CRPF in association with the Visakhapatnam District Football Association is planning a friendly match with the local teams.

The proposal by CRPF IG Chhattisgarh Zulfiqar Hasan was supported by CRPF Southern Region IG NRK Reddy and the youngsters were divided into two groups and sent to two major cities in the region.

The idea was to expose the youngsters from the Maoist stronghold areas to career opportunities outside their villages and also understand the development of the country, Mr Nisheet Kumar said. Such interactions would help bridge the gap between the Central Police Forces and the villagers in the Maoist strongholds, he added.

Strong will power and dedication to the game was essential for success and there was need to encourage athletics among youngsters, State’s first Asian Games medal winner Ch Pratap Kumar said addressing the youth.

Pratap Kumar urged the youngsters to work hard for achieving glory in the chosen game.

The enthusiastic youngsters were keen on a future in the game and wanted a chance to play at the national level, if not for the nation.

The youngsters on their part thanked the CRPF officials in Chhattisgarh for giving them an opportunity to see the world outside their State.

Only two of the 20 had been out of their State, one of them had gone to play a match in Kolkata and another had gone to Chindwara in neighbouring Madhya Pradesh.

Visakhapatnam Football Association secretary Jagan Mohan Rao, CRPF 198 BN Deputy Commandant Dixit, Dy Commandant KG Rao, and a large number of officers were among those present at the meeting.

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