tete-a-tete with col. pk oberoi

GII.    Which is your favorite Golf Course and why?

PKU.  Army Golf Course. I have worked on the course and feel more at home while playing there. Every plant every shrub and every tree speaks for itself, having been nurtured by me.

GII.    Which is your favorite Golf Course and why?

PKU.  Army Golf Course. I have worked on the course and feel more at home while playing there. Every plant every shrub and every tree speaks for itself, having been nurtured by me.

GII.    For how long have you been playing Golf and what initiated you into this game?

PKU.  At one stage I was against Golf. As far back as 1973, I used to call it an old man’s game. But as time went by,. I found the game so challenging that I took it up as a challenge and started some time in 1989 at Udhampur range and for the next six months was glued to the range itself. I had just about mastered the irons but was coerced to go on the course despite not being so good on the woods but then the bug had already bitten and there was no looking back.

GII.    Which Golf Course you have witnessed during Development Phase?

PKU. –

GII.    Your favorite Golf Course for Hospitality & Management.

PKU.  Jaypee Greens.

GII.    Which all Golf Courses (past and present) you have been associated with?

PKU.  Very difficult to list them out… practically all the Golf courses in NCR and also in the country.

GII.    Where do you see the Golf Industry after 5 years.

MC.  I explain proper reason  with R&A USGA methodology & try to address the concerns of complaining members.

GII.    A tough situation when your expert advice to the management led to an improvement in your Department/Company.

PKU. Somehow, wherever I went and took over, I found that the courses were starved either in terms of  playing conditions and more importantly, the Staff who are the main stay of the Course were neglected. I had a tough time convincing the Management but eventually got over them and the Staff is now well looked after and they too responded with their diligence and hard work.

GII.    What is your advice to patrons and colleagues of Golf Courses to help them in increasing their revenues.

PKU.  Unless we  have more and more Public Golf courses and allow the outsiders to play with a nominal fee, the situation from only the members subscription etc is not enough. There need to be a participation from all avenues and that is how more and more Tournaments etc can be conducted and the visibility will be available to the Sponsors, without whom, it is impossible to run the course and championships.

GII.    Seeing the current trend, do you feel Golf can be as favorite as Cricket in India.

PKU.  In the present scenario it is well nigh impossible to compete with Cricket in India. Look at BCCI, they have their wings spread right from the grass root level, from Schools, to the Districts , to the States and the country. They sponsor each and every aspect of cricket all over India and are churning out World class cricketers year after year. What is the IGU doing  in comparison? There are a few individuals who are running some events and as I look at it and may say that the day Mr Pawan Munjal pulls his hand from Indian Open, the Pros will also take a back seat. There is one Lahiri or one Sharma or one Aditi Ashok, who comes into reckoning after decades that too on their OWN STEAM. A very sad state of affairs. The sport in our country has become an elitist sport and if the masses do not participate I am afraid it will die its natural death. The Golfers who are doing well are only interested in playing ABROAD, why? Because the scope out here is very limited, whereas when you compare yourself with cricket, the outsiders want to play here. Exactly an opposite scenario. On a Sunday or an holiday you see practically everybody playing cricket on the play is fool hardiness to compare with cricket. An initiative like ‘Khelo India“ will definitely bring fruitful results in all the other disciplines of sports, but it is a pity that Golf does not find its pride of place!

GII.    How many years you feel it may take to reach that level.

PKU.  It is not a question of time, it is the opportunity, we are drastically missing out on the main aspects. Unless the Sports Ministry takes on the mantle of including it as a Priority sport, things will move at a snails pace only. Not one of the Regional Directors of Sports Authority of India (SAI) has Golf included in their curriculum. SAI has to take it on in a big way. We are far behind even in Asia, what to talk of Europe and other foreign countries. Countries like Vietnam are also ahead of us. We need a drastic change to bring about results by all and sundry who matter. It has to flow from top otherwise we will not make any headway.

GII.    How can we grow the numbers of Golfers in India.

PKU. As I have said there is a need for more and more Public Golf course. I would strongly recommend that every State must be mandated to have an 18 Hole Golf course with full fledged facilities of Practice range, Gymnasium etc all. There should be National level school championships and there after District and State level events duly controlled by the Government. The Ministry of Tourism wants to promote Golf and the pity is that they are only sponsoring Pro events (Incredible India) Why can’t they follow and work on the footsteps of Malaysian Golf Tours or Thailand Golf tours? The Golf courses should have more and more of reciprocity and encourage domestic Golf tours to start with. A lot of individuals are doing it but the same needs to be streamlined at the National level. If the Schools are supported (financially) by the State or the Central Govt and include Golf as part of the Sports curriculum some talent will emerge and the bug may bite to most of them.

GII.    What excites you on a Golf Course?

PKU.  The degree of difficulty makes it more and more challenging, at the same time it should not be so difficult as to discourage a second round. Difficult yet achievable.

GII.    Favorite 19th Hole Drink.

PKU.  A chilled glass of ‘Chaach” or “Lassi “