A computer-generated image of the planned Gautam Buddha International Cricket Stadium and surroundings. Image Courtesy: Dhurmus-Suntali Foundation
KATHMANDU, Jan 31: The Dhurmus-Suntali Foundation led by actors Sitaram Kattel (Dhurmus) and Kunjana Ghimire (Suntali) has unveiled a plan to construct a multi-purpose international cricket stadium in Bharatpur Metropolitan City in Chitwan.
The actors at a function organized in Kathmandu on Wednesday, said that the Gautam Buddha International Cricket Stadium will be built at the cost of around Rs 3 billion. An agreement on land acquisition was signed between the foundation and the Bharatpur Metropolitan City on Wednesday.
Foundation Chairman Kattel and Mayor of Bharatpur Metropolitan City Renu Dahal signed the agreement at the function, which was attended by top political leaders including Prime Minister and Nepal Communist Party (NCP) Chairman KP Oli, another NCP Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Nepali Congress General Secretary Shashanka Koirala.
The cricket stadium will be built across 20 bigha and six katthas (13.75 hectares) of land.
Kattel said they plan to complete the construction in two and a half years. Stating that the funds will be collected from Nepalis staying in and outside the country, Kattel sought support from one and all for the project.
He expressed commitment to start the construction work within the next six months.
“We are committed to constructing the stadium just like our past projects including the Musahar settlement,'' Kattel said, “Building a stadium will not be as easy as the Musahar settlement.''
Stating that Nepali cricketers have brought international fame to the country, he said lack of proper infrastructures for the sport had however disappointed the players as well as cricket fans. “It's so unfortunate that we still don't have an international level stadium,'' Kattel said.
The entrance to the stadium will be designed in a Stupa style, the stadium itself will be designed in a lotus shape. The total capacity of the stadium will be for 25,000 spectators.
Prime Minister Oli addressing the function expressed his commitment to support the project.
“The government is willing to help for such a good cause,'' Oli said, “Cricket has given recognition to Nepal worldwide. Even though, it's a new game, Nepal has managed to achieve tangible progress rather quickly.''
Mayor Dahal, who played an important role in providing land for the construction of the stadium, promised to leave no stone unturned to complete the construction within the set deadline. “The Bharatpur Metropolitan City will assist in the construction in coordination with the central and the provincial governments,'' said Mayor Dahal.
The stadium will also have two separate practice grounds.
Likewise, the stadium will have a cricket academy and a ground for football, a swimming pool, and basketball, volleyball, tennis, and dandi-biyo courts.