FC Goa joined the Goan capital city of Panaji in its efforts to create a vibrant, smart and sports friendly city. Members of the FC Goa squad along with the management visited Garcia de Orta on Sunday evening to engage with the community, raise awareness and show its support for the Panaji Smart City Challenge campaign.
Sanjit Rodrigues, Commissioner, CCP welcomed team FC Goa to cheers from citizens gather at the garden for the community event. The Original Bandstand is a community event organized by the CII’s Panaji First initiative in collaboration with the Corporation of the City of Panaji every Sunday evening. Shrinivas Dempo, promoter, FC Goa is one of the trustees of the Panaji First Initiative.
FC Goa players Joaquim Abranches, Laxmikant Kathimani, Romeo Fernandes, Mandar Rao Dessai, Nicolau Calaco, Dudu, Jonanthan Lucca and Grégory Arnolin dropped by Garcia de Orta garden during its Sunday Bandstand event to raise awareness and show its support for the capital city of Panaji. The players mingles with the community and autographed merchandise for their young supporters.
At the event, the club submitted a petition to city leaders to create a football park for the benefit of Goa’s football enthusiasts. The football park can be a meeting point for football fans and aficionados of all ages, to come together for the love of the beautiful game. FC Goa has offered its support and assistance to city leaders in making this project a reality in the interest of the citizens of Goa.
Panaji, the capital of Goa has been selected in the list of 100 smart cities under the Smart City Mission of Union Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD), Government of India launched in June 2015. As the next step, Panaji now has to get shortlisted in the final round of the MoUD’s Smart City Challenge, where 20 other cities would be selected to be developed in the first year.
Sukhvinder Singh, CEO, FC Goa, said, “FC Goa is present at the event today to show solidarity to the cause of making the state capital Panaji a better city. We wish to see a lot many more citizens of Goa experience the goodness of football. We strongly propose to the authorities to invest in football infrastructure especially at the recreational level considering that many young people across all age groups want to step out and play football. Such mass engagement will lead to a bigger participation and a healthier society. FC Goa would love to do everything possible to create a great atmosphere if the CCP creates the country’s first football park in the city of Panaji.”
Sanjit Rodrigues, Commissioner, CCP, added, “We are delighted to have team FC Goa at Garcia de Orta today. FC Goa has come forward with a smart idea for a smart Panaji. The club has suggested that the city should have a football park and have come forward to collaborate with the city. This couldn’t have come at a better time as the city is involved in the Smart City Challenge.”
Goa’s tryst with football is well established in the country and the state is known for producing exciting footballers, many of whom are currently playing for various Hero ISL clubs.
The Hero Indian Super League (ISL) sparked off a football revolution in the country last year with its inaugural edition, featuring eight city franchises, international football stars, celebrated coaches and a host of Indian football talent. FC Goa which triggered a whirlwind of interest from fans and supporters of the club over the opening as well as the second season of the ISL which is presently underway. The grand finale to the 2015 season will be held in the football-crazy state of Goa on December 20, 2015.
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