Hockey India and Odisha government strike 5-year sponsorship deal worth Rs 100 crore

Rani Rampal and Harmanpreet Singh
India captains Rani Rampal and Manpreet Singh during the kit launch of the Indian hockey teams in New Delhi

In a country like India, where the game of cricket predominantly rules the hearts of the citizens, the state of Odisha decided to swim against the tide by choosing to the sponsor the men’s and women’s hockey national teams.

However, this association between the Odisha government and Hockey India is not one that has developed overnight. Apart from being a breeding ground for future hockey stars of the nation, Odisha is the home ground of defending Hockey India League (HIL) champions, Kalinga Lancers. This team is owned by Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (IDCO).

Thus it made a lot of sense for the Odisha government to grab the opportunity of sponsoring the national hockey teams once Sahara's 5-year contract with Hockey India was mutually terminated.

Odisha Sports and Youth Affairs Secretary Vishal Kumar Dev further revealed to Sportskeeda that Odisha Mining Corporation Limited is funding this deal on behalf of the Odisha government.

“Sahara renewed the agreement with Hockey India for five years from 2017 to 2021. Then apparently in between, there were some payment problems and that's when we stepped in and started our discussions with Hockey India.

It was more of a mutual discussion between Hockey India and us (Odisha government). During the Hockey World League final in December last year, Hockey India shared the idea with us and also revealed the exact figure that Sahara was paying to them. So this is a deal of Rs 20 crore per year for five years," Dev said.

He went on to inform that the contract amount of Odisha government's deal with Hockey India is the same as Sahara's agreement, which was renewed in 2017, which eventually amounts to a total of Rs 100 crore to Hockey India for a period of five years.

“Sahara started with Rs 20 crore in 2017. We are just continuing with that figure, there’s no change in that amount," Dev added.

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Edited by Soumo Ghosh
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