Guntur: Neglect and shabby infrastructure greets sportspersons and sports lovers who visit the BR (Brahmananda Reddy) Stadium in Guntur. Sportspersons say garbage is piling up next to a temporary road laid for entry into the stadium.
Further, with the onset of the Covid-19 crisis, the Guntur Municipal Corporation (GMC) set up a makeshift rythu bazaar at the BR Stadium for several months. The track and ground were spoiled due to the movement of vehicles inside the stadium during the lockdown.
As the Centre eased lockdown restrictions, the GMC shifted the rythu bazaar to the entrance of the stadium a month ago.
Although the GMC set up a dedicated rythu bazaar close to the stadium, its decision to continue the vegetable market in the stadium premises has upset many.
Sportspersons say that while the Sports Authority of Andhra Pradesh (SAAP) had failed to keep the stadium in good shape to facilitate the training of budding players, the GMC’s decision has worsened matters by locating the rythu bazaar inside the stadium and the dumping yard adjacent to it.
Recently, the GMC started a campaign to keep the city clean by enforcing penalties on small street vendors for littering and threatened to to cut off drinking water supply to homes if residents did not segregate garbage into two bins.
“I have received complaints and directed the local sanitary inspector to take action. I will visit the place to take stock of the situation,” said Dr Venkata Ramana, municipal health officer.
Another issue is stray dogs roaming on the stadium premises. “The track has been damaged and there are stray dogs as well,” said Swetha, a young sportsperson. Subhani (65), a fitness enthusiast, added that authorities are not taking any action despite the number of sportspersons and fitness enthusiasts who come from Guntur East to practise in the stadium.