India’s new union minister of Sports, Sarbanand Sonowal, who took charge on Tuesday, declared that his priority is to make his ministry “visible” andf thus draw the attention of fellow ministers. For that, he said, will ask advise from experts and various former players of the country to discharge his duties earnestly.
Sonowal, who was greeted on the first day at Shashtri Bhavan by minitry officials, was prudent and took very few questions from media.
The minister, who is an MP from Lakhimpur contituency in Assam, said: “Today is the first day. I need your (media) support and support of the countrymen to make this ministry important and visible.”
“I want the sports personalities to grow from our countryside,” he continued. When asked about his priorities, the 51-year-old leader remained evasive, stating instead: “Some other day I will talk in detail about my future plan and action. I will discuss (matters) with sports experts and sports personalities of the country to carry out my functions and responsibilities effectively.”
Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was also in Dlehi yesterday for Narendra Modi’s coronation and when Sonowal was quizzed was if there is any hope of resumption of cricketing ties between the two coutries, the minsiter came up with a short and expected statement: “We are always interested to develop good relations with our neighbouring countries.”
After his brief interaction with media, Sonowal met Sports Secretary Ajit M Sharan and other officials. Earlier, Sonowal was an MLA in Assam Assembly from 2001-04 before winning the Lok Sabha election from Dibrugarh. Before jumping over to BJP in 2001, he was associated with Asom Gana Parishad (AGP).