Goa Sports Minister Govind Gaude on Thursday said the coastal state will be ready to host the National Games in December. Gaude told media persons in Panaji that reports about the National Games being shifted to Gujarat were mere "media speculations."
The minister said infrastructure facilities for hosting the multi-disciplinary sports extravaganza were ready in Goa, but they need final touches.
Gaude said due to incessant rains in the state and 45-day period required for completing the formalities, Goa will not be able to host the games before November-December. He said the Indian Olympics Association (IOA) had asked the Goa government to host the National Games from September 6 to 16.
"But I have informed the IOA that we are not ready to host them before December," Gaude said. The minister said if the sporting event does not come to Goa in 2022, the state will host it next year.
Gaude said the coastal state is already getting ready to host international events like the Women's Football World Cup and the Asian Beach Games.
"We will be using the existing sports infrastructure to host these events," he said.
Goa was chosen as the destination for the National Games in 2008, but due to different reasons the state has failed to host them. The minister said his government does not want to dwell in the past and wants to look at the future.