Discovering Sports at heart

by Subhechcha Ganguly

R. Vineel Krishna, an IAS officer of the 2005 batch, is in the thick of attention these days. He is the man behind the grand sporting spectacle- the Hokey World Cup to be hosted by Odisha in January 2023. Mr Krishna has been instrumental in building a world-class stadium at Rourkela, the country’s epicentre for hockey. Elaborate arrangements have been made to organize the event and it has been made possible in a record time span due to the grandiose vision of Mr Krishna complemented by copious efforts on the ground. Krishna was confident that the new 20,000-capacity hockey stadium in Rourkela would be completed in time.

For the first time in the history of hockey, the World Cup will be played at two venues i.e. Bhubaneswar and Rourkela. India’s largest Hockey stadium with all modern amenities is set up at Rourkela.

Arranging such internationally acclaimed tournaments has brought laurels to the state even at the international level. After the historic performances by both the hockey teams at Tokyo Olympics, the state government has also extended the sponsorship contract for them for another 10 years till 2032

The FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023 Bhubaneswar-Rourkela will begin on 13 January. Australia, Belgium, Netherlands, India, Argentina, Germany, New Zealand, England, France, Korea, Malaysia, Spain, South Africa, Japan, Chile, and Wales are the 16 teams participating in the World Cup 2023.

In a career spanning over 17 years in Odisha administration, he worked in various capacities including District Magistrate, Private Secretary to Union Cabinet Minister in Ministries of Environment & Forests and Rural Development, Chief Operating Officer for Skill Development Project in Maoist affected areas under UNDP and Chief Executive Officer, Bhubaneswar Smart City. He has held many other important positions in the state government, including the Chairman and Managing Director of Odisha Mining Corporation Limited (OMCL) and Special Secretary to Government of Odisha, Agriculture & Cooperation Department.

Krishna is a B.Tech Graduate in Civil Engineering from IIT, Chennai. He was awarded Chevening Gurukul Scholarship in 2012 at London School of Economics. He was a Draper Hill Fellow at Stanford University.

Krishna is credited with establishing Odisha as a Sports Capital of the country. Under his leadership over the last few years, the sports infrastructure and facilities in Odisha have improved drastically.

Mr Krishna caught nationwide attention when he was abducted by Maoists in February 2011 and was set free after nine days of captivity.

Before joining as the Malkangiri district collector, he worked as the Project Director of Ganjam district in Chhatrapur, He has also served as the sub-collector of Baliguda in Kandhamal district. His first posting as a probationer was Bangiriposi, a Maoist-affected tribal block of Mayurbhanj district in 2005.

The workaholic bureaucrat works nonstop from morning to night in order to develop multiple sectors as he oversees several activities in the CMO, which regularly monitors development activities across the state.

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