KARACHI - Gulshan-e-Iqbal town administration has conducted massive sports development work in the area to facilitate the inhabitants and also planned that Austroturf to be laid in two grounds of the town, The Nation observed during a visit of newsmen along with the Gulshan-e-Iqbal town administration here on Sunday. So far the Gulshan-e-Iqbal town administration had developed 12 sports grounds with different kinds of sports facilities in various UCs, said Town Nazim Wasay Jalil. He said that the two Austroturf had been finally proposed in which PC-1 for one turf had also been approved which would be laid at Olympian Iftikhar Syed Hockey ground, where a coaching camp for U-12 hockey players had already been established. Alongside the hockey ground and a basketball court have also been established for girls and more than 160-basketball girl players daily practice here. Jalil said: "Involvement of the community of the said UC is very vital that sports development work has been carried out in their vicinity. After the development work the citizens themselves will bear all the expenditures in maintaining the grounds and do not depend on the town administration." He said that the hockey ground and Kokan sports ground in Kokan Society were the examples where the residents of the area maintaining the grounds and bearing all the expenditures, which was a good sign that community was participating, owning and caring the development work which was never ever happened in our society before. "Around 500 people have got the membership of the Kokan sports ground committee which themselves maintaining the ground. Floodlights for playing cricket during night and jogging track have been made for the residents of UC 1." Jalil said that the local government was working on an ambitious project aimed at preparing two hockey grounds equipped with synthetic turfs in a bid to boost sports infrastructure in Karachi. Gulshan Town nazim said: "The people of Karachi will soon have two Austroturfs in the City with the collaboration of CDGK, as City Nazim Mustafa Kamal assured his all-out support to the towns administrations that best sporting facilities will be provided to the citizens." He was surprised to know that Karachi had only a single hockey ground which was equipped with Austroturf which was the Hockey Club of Pakistan running by the government of Pakistan. "It is ironical to know that Karachi has only a single Astroturf in the City. Hockey is our national game and there should have been much more proper hockey grounds in the City." "We have planned two hockey grounds which were equipped with synthetic turfs in Gulshan Town and that will be materialised in the coming months. The one we have planned to be placed at Iftikhar Syed Sports Academy and that is in its final phase. Every thing is prepared and we are seeking a good firm from whom we can buy the turfs. We have the quotations of firms from America, Holland and Korea and it will be decided in the coming days," he added. Olympian Iftikhar Syed, who was coaching the under-12 players there said that more than 1900 Austroturfs had been laid in Netherlands where children started playing hockey from their childhood. "But in our country where hockey is our national game and we are considered a hockey power despite recent decline in the game, there is no facility for the upcoming and young players to play hockey at Austroturfs." "I haven't seen for the past forty years such initiatives taken by the government officials for the development of sports in the City." Iftikhar's academy is located in the Gulshan Block 6. Jalil said that there were certain legal procedures for finding the ground for the construction of second hockey ground. "We have the funds and that would take no time after the place is finalised," he assured. Apart from the hockey grounds, various other sports facilities have also been set up in the area. Kokan Ground is one such facility. There is also a lush green cricket ground surrounded by a jogging track. President Karachi Roller Skating Association who was also present on the occasion asked Jalil to make a marble floor for the skaters. Wasay Jalil ordered the town municipal officer to build one to facilitate the skaters. Naib Town Nazim Shoaib Akhtar told The Nation that Gulshan-e-Iqbal was situated in heart of the City and we were working to make it the "town of parks and playgrounds." He said that town administration had already developed more than 12 different playgrounds in the town besides 15 parks and gardens in various UCs. He further said that development of PIB Sports Gymnasium, a football stadium, a tartan track for athletics competition, a swimming pool and a cricket stadium had also been planned in different UCs of the town.