Mumbai: Leader of Opposition in the state legislative assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil today said that the Maharashtra government form a Forts and Heritage Structure Corporation and earmark Rs 1,000 crore for their preservation.

The Congress leader was speaking during a debate on the conservation of historical forts, 'classical' status to Marathi language and the sports policy of the state.

"The government should make all efforts to preserve and present before the young generation the glorious history of King Shivaji by restoring the forts," Vikhe-Patil said.

"The state can form 'Forts and Heritage Structure Corporation' for this," he said.

The forts should become a tourist attraction and people should get inspired by them, he said.

"The government should appoint an experts' committee and employ local people in the work of restoration and preserving the history and not let the (central) legislation related to archaeological department interfere with this," he added.

"We have been hearing about proposal to grant classical status for Marathi language for a long time. But the Centre appears to be non-enthusiastic over the issue. The bureaucracy
too might be a cause for the delay," he said and appealed the government for a speedy action over the issue.

"The sports policy of the state too has been entangled in the bureaucratic hassles," he said while pointing out that announcements in the past were never acted upon.

"The sports complexes at taluka level are being used for other purposes, rural schools don't have sports equipment, schools don't have financial aid to purchase equipment. All
this should change," Patil said.